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  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 8:20 pm on July 6, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: discrimination against disabled employees, , ,   

    Immigration Office Discriminates against the Disabled? 

    WPimage

    The immigration laws passed by Congress provide special provisions for people with disabilities. In particular, there is a process called disability naturalization, where individuals who cannot learn to speak English or otherwise retain information because of a disability, can be exempted from certain parts of the naturalization process.

    As background, naturalization is the process to become a U.S. citizen. To become a citizen, a person must first, generally, have been a permanent resident with a green card. To obtain citizenship through naturalization, a person must speak English, take a history test and know how to read and write English. An exception to all of this, is if they have a disability such as blindness, deafness, mental disorder, etc.

    While historically, the immigration service has approved many of these cases, I have noticed a trend in Houston lately where the interviewing officers are looking for ways to deny disability naturalization or otherwise give the disabled a hard time. For example, in a case that I  had at the Houston immigration office today, the officer, Ms. C. Arredando, claimed that she could not read the doctor’s writing on the immigration form that the doctor is supposed to complete.

    While doctors may be notorious for their poor handwriting, the doctor’s writing in this case was clearly legible to this Houston immigration attorney. When the officer was losing that argument, she then claimed that the doctor’s signature was not original, but rather a scanned copy. All the while, this poor disabled client who does not speak English was being told she would have to come back (after driving two hours to get there and waiting over an hour until her name was called) another day with a clearer form and original signature.

    Sadly, this is the new reality of how disabled clients may expect to be treated when visiting the Houston immigration office. The notion of the government accommodating people with disabilities does not seem to ring true, from my recent experiences, at the Houston immigration office. Perhaps the current strategy of the Houston immigration office is to frustrate as many people as possible so that they will drop their efforts to become a U.S. citizen.

    For further information, I can be contacted at bruce.coane@gmail.com or 713.850.0066 or 305.538.6800.

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  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 8:44 pm on June 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Police Right to Act as Immigration Officers 

    CBP Officers pay tribute to fellow fallen officers during a Law Enforcement memorial service in Washington D.C.

     

    In certain parts of the country, police are taking it upon themselves to act as immigration officers. In the most recent case of illegal arrests and detentions, Ariel Vences-Lopez, a 23 year old from Minneapolis was detained by a transit rail police officer. Mr. Lopez failed to pay his fare and refused to verbally respond. This led to police officer, Andy Lamers, proceeding to taser and detain Mr. Lopez due to his immigration status.

    In the New York Times article, police Chief John Harrington states that, “it is not his department’s policy to question riders about their immigration status. Harrington said the officer who questioned Vences-Lopez in the video is no longer with the department”. The police officer who over-stepped his power was disciplined.

    While most state governments ensure to keep the line between police officers and immigration officers very clear and even punishable if crossed, the State of Texas encourages their police officers to ask for immigration status under Senate Bill 4 (SB4). This new law signed by Governor Gregg Abbott, grants local police the power to act as federal immigration officers. In an attempt to curb illegal immigration, Texas has taken a very tough stand against immigrants.

    Senate Bill 4, which goes into effect on September 1, 2017 is already creating a lot of negative backlash.  Now a simple act like driving without a license can get you detained and even deported if you are of color. Police are even encouraged to ask for immigration status in domestic violence calls.  In another controversial news story from The Washington Post, a woman was detained after seeking domestic abuse protection at a Texas courthouse.

    For further information, this Houston immigration lawyer and Miami immigration lawyer can be contacted at 713.850.0066, 305.538.6800 or bruce.coane@gmail.com.

     
  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 3:56 pm on October 25, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , K-1 Visa, Visa adjustment   

    K-1 Visa Adjustment of Status and the Affidavit of Support 

    eA very common issue with K-1 visa holders, is whether they need an affidavit of support when they apply for adjustment of status in the USA. After-all, they would have provided an affidavit of support to the USA Consulate at the time that they were applying for the K-1 visa.

    K-1 visa holders must marry their fiance within 90 days of entering the USA. Thereafter, they can file for adjustment of status from the K-1 visa to a green card. The immigration service in the USA will require another affidavit of support with the I-485 form. The question is what to do if the parties are separated or divorced, and the immigrant cannot get another affidavit of support.

    Recently, in the case of Matter of Sesay, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) confirmed that an immigrant can still get a green card even if they are no longer married to the USA citizen sponsor.. What the BIA did not discuss, is what happens to the requirement of the affidavit of support.

    I have had several clients come to my office after entering on a K-1, getting married and divorced, and having their adjustment denied because they had no new affidavit of support. In one case, this month, the immigration service actually approved my client’s green card, even with no new affidavit of support. Fortunately she had a copy of the affidavit of support that was presented at the USA consulate when she got the K-1 visa. That was not enough initially , however, as the immigration service previously denied her adjustment case when she could not provide a NEW affidavit of support. I convinced them to reopen that case, and they approved it.

    I have another K-1 adjustment case in Immigration Court with the same exact issue. Hopefully the immigration judge will agree with me, or the government lawyer will withdraw their demand for a new affidavit of support. In the end, however, the purpose of the affidavit of support is to prove that the immigrant will not become a public charge. You would think that the original affidavit would be enough, or that other evidence would be sufficient to allow fiances to get the green card to which they are entitled under the law.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at bruce.coane@gmail.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
    • Troy 9:02 pm on October 25, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Idiots. The affidavit of support is still in legal effect notwithstanding divorce.

    • Coane & Associates 9:11 pm on October 25, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      We didn’t say it quite that way to the service center, but they rejected that idea and denied the adjustment of status. I’ve seen the same thing on other cases, demanding a new 864, or denying the 485 when you don’t produce it.

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    • Bruce Coane 1:14 am on April 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I am Board Certified in Immigration Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and available to help on immigration matters throughout the United States and around the world. For appointments call 713-850-0066

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  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 9:00 am on October 4, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    Another DREAM Act-Deferred Action Case 

    Today, I got hired on another DREAM Act-deferred action type immigration case.

    Too bad the President had to order this program and that Congress is so politicized that they can’t agree to help young people. My new client is a nice 18 yr old girl from Mexico who was brought to America as a baby. She knows how to drive, but can’t get a license; she finished high school, but can’t go to college without proper ID. The State of Texas makes it very difficult for undocumented immigrants to enroll in college and to get a driver’s license.

    Thanks to the DREAM Act, or in particular, the President’s Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals program, I will hopefully get my 18 yr old client a work permit, social security number and a driver’s license in just a few short months. If you want to know more about this program, I made a video about it which you can watch here.

    Almost 100,000 young people have applied under this new program. It is believed that hundreds of thousands more are eligible, but have not come forward yet for various reasons. Some individuals worry that they may be disqualified due to an arrest or a short visit abroad. Our law firm takes on those more difficult cases, as well, and we do consultations to discuss such cases in-person, or via Skype or phone.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 3:18 pm on September 15, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    Israeli Couple Finally Eligible for Green Card 

    I was hired yesterday by an Israeli couple who have been living illegally in the USA for over 20 years. They came to America legally with tourist visas, fell in love here, got married here, and never left.

    The couple had a baby in the U.S., but having a baby does not allow the parents to get any legal status. At the same time, the baby is automatically a USA citizen, by being born in America. However, once that baby grows and becomes an adult, it can sponsor its parents for lawful status when it turns 21 years old.

    Now, 21 years later, this couple’s baby is turning 21, and can now sponsor her parents for legal status in the USA. The parents, who have been living in the shadows for over 20 years, have been running a business, paying significant taxes, and generally helping the economy, all with no legal papers.

    I am looking forward to helping them through the massive amounts of paperwork to get their legal residence, now that their daughter is turning 21. They can finally come out of the shadows and live an even more productive life in America.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 1:10 am on September 14, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , ,   

    Disability Naturalization – A Way for Older Residents to Become a USA Citizen 

    In order to become a USA citizen, a person, generally, must first be a lawful permanent resident (green card) for a number of years. In addition, the person must be able to speak English, pass a history test in English and be able to read and write English.

    U.S. Citizenship Naturalization

    photo: Flickr

    Many older residents are unable to understand English sufficiently to pass the test, and therefore never get USA citizenship. There is a solution for those struggling with English, and that is through disability naturalization.

    The law provides that if a person is disabled, the English language requirements can be waived. At our law firm, we have helped many people become U.S. citizens, where they could not learn English. In order to qualify, the individual must be certified by a doctor to have a disability that prevents them from learning English. Many times this could be onset dementia, Alzheimers, or other less tragic illnesses that may be affecting memory or language skills.

    Any older person who cannot get their naturalization due to lack of English skills should definitely explore citizenship through naturalization through the disability waiver.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 8:23 am on July 5, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cancellation of removal, ,   

    Deportation for Drug Possession? 

    Today I am preparing for an immigration court trial that takes place later this week.

    My client is from Honduras and has been a legal immigrant for over 15 years. He has been eligible for U.S.citizenship for many years but never applied. Has he applied and become a U.S.citizen, then he would have not been subject to these deportation proceedings.

    He was arrested for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute. He plead guilty to the lesser offense of possession, but still must fight immigration allegations that he was “dealing.”

    At trial this week, we will need to prove that he was not dealing cocaine, and that the large quantity he was charged with possessing was not his or otherwise not under his control.

    Fortunately, a law known as cancellation of removal allows a judge to let our client keep his green card (legal immigrant status) if we can prove he’s not a dealer and that there are equities in his favor.

    One final note, and that is, there is mandatory jail detention for any legal immigrant charged with a drug offense other than, perhaps, simple possession of a small quantity of marijuana. So, my client has been in immigration jail for many months, waiting for this trial which will get him released immediately if he wins.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
    • claire 10:41 am on May 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      what happens if u are married to a us citizen and they bring drugs into your home to sell but u never do drugs and are not involved can u get deported and could you lose your licence if u are an attorney . Is this worse than marrying a stranger and being done for marraige fraud. please advice . please it’s for my bf and she won’t visit a lawyer for advice she lives in N.Y. and her bf Is a felon

  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 4:50 am on June 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: amnesty, , ,   

    The New Immigration Status for Young People 

    The government has announced an “amnesty” for young people, via a program called deferred action. Here’s my latest video where I explain the process.

    Basically, the immigration program is for people 30 years old and younger, who came to the USA before the age of 16 and have lived here for at least 5 years. There are other requirements, as well, and each case will be decided based on its own merit. Potential applicants can begin collecting evidence in order to submit it when the government opens the application period.

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law and immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

     
  • Coane and Associates,PLLC 3:49 am on February 3, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , lawsuit against Homeland Security, lawsuit against US Passport Agency, lawsuit against US Social Security Administration,   

    Lawsuit Filed Against Homeland Security-Guru Orders No DNA Testing 

    I filed another lawsuit against Homeland Security this week, on behalf of client’s seeking proof of citizenship for their child. Homeland Security is requiring DNA testing, yet my client’s guru, says the child may not be tested nor receive any needles or injections.

    My clients are U.S.citizens and their child was born in India. They sought to register the child’s birth at the U.S.Embassy in India and they passed-the-buck and refused to do it without DNA testing. Instead, the U.S.Embassy issued the child a visa so he could accompany his parents to the U.S.

    The child is now 10 years old and attending public school in Houston, Texas. He has a vaccination waiver from the State of Texas because of the family’s religious beliefs, as verified by their guru.

    Other parties to the lawsuit include the U.S.Passport Agency and the Social Security Administration, who have refused to issue a passport and social security card, respectively, to the child. The lawsuit seeks to compel these government agencies to issue proper documents to the child. A federal judge in Houston will decide the case.
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    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law, and, immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at houstonlaw@aol.com, 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800. mhg912PV

     
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