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Don’t Come Up With New Facts

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Don't come up with new facts. Hi, I'm Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer practicing law throughout the United States at our offices in St. Louis, San Diego and Washington, D.C. I'm a little fired up this morning. I got some good news on one of our cases so I'm really excited. This is the last video of the day I'm shooting and I just got word that one of our clients' cases got approved so I'm excited about that. In this video, we want to talk about changing the information provided in your applications. Now, first and foremost, you always have to tell the truth. So if you file for one immigration benefit, and then later you apply for another one, and you remember something that you forgot to include the first time, then it's important to tell the truth. I'm not telling you not to tell the truth, but I am telling you to think long and hard about the information that you put on your subsequent immigration form.

So let's take a hypothetical person. Let's say that somebody comes to the United States on a visit visa, and let's say that they list their job and their job title and their marital status and they provide all this information in the visit visa application. Then later, they apply for let's say a green card. My advice would be that if you're applying for that green card, you need to go back and get a copy of your visit visa from the State Department. You need to get a copy of your DS-160 to figure out what information you provided. It's not because we're trying to lie or hide anything now that we're applying for a green card, it's that we don't want to make any stupid mistakes. We don't want to say, "Oh, well I was born in UAE, but I am a Palestinian citizen."

You need to make sure that the information that you've always provided has been the same, or if you're going to change the information that you're providing, then you need to provide an explanation. You need to make it clear to the USCIS that you weren't trying to mislead anyone at the State Department or at the Immigration Service or at Customs. That's true as well when you apply for citizenship. So you want everything to be sort of a straight line. You want the information to be consistent through all of your applications, because if not, that's going to cause problems. The thing is now it's very easy for USCIS to pull up your visit visa. It doesn't take them nearly as long as they used to. It's much more customary for them to go back and look at what you told the government when you said you wanted to come to the United States.

So if you're making fundamental changes, like if you've omitted a child or omitted a marriage, then that's going to be a real problem. You have to think to yourself, "Should I apply for this new benefit based on the information I provided to get the old benefit?" That's the real problem is that you have to ask yourself, "Is it worth risking citizenship if we have to be honest and tell them about this one piece of information that we forgot to or neglected to include the first time?" So this even continues after you get your citizenship, but what do you mean Jim? Well, we have plenty of people who contact our office and say, "Jim, I want to sponsor my son to come over to the United States from South Africa." "Oh, okay. Well what's immigration status?" "Oh, I'm a citizen." "How'd you get that?" "Oh, I got it based on marriage." "When you applied for a citizenship, did you list this kid from South Africa?" "Oh, no. I didn't." "Well, why didn't you?" "Oh, I don't know. He wasn't living with me, so I didn't think I had to list him, but now I want to sponsor him for an I-130."

That's what I'm talking about. It's this lack of consistency that really causes people problems. So if you need help tracking down your old file so that you can file the new, stronger case, give us a call at 314-961-8200. You can email us, [email protected]. Be sure to join us on our Facebook group, which is called Immigrant Home. If you like this video, we ask that you please share it out on your social, and subscribe to our YouTube channel. We also ask that you join Immigrant Home, our Facebook group. On Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 1 Central, you'll find me live answering as many immigration law related questions as possible. Thanks a lot and have a great day.

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