Discussion Points for Punto Legal- February 10, 2016

  1. The March 2016 visa bulletin is out. The cut-off date for spouses and children of residents from Mexico is 15 June 2014; last month it was 8 June 2014. The cut-off date for brothers and sisters of citizens from Mexico is 1 April 1997. The cut-off date for brothers and sisters of citizens from Mexico has been stuck at 1 April 1997 since November 2015.

  2. I want to talk to you about tattoos and consular processing in Juarez. When you go to Juarez to fix your papers, you have to get a medical exam from one of three clinics, which have contracts with the United States consulate. At the medical clinic, currently you are asked four different times if you have tattoos. At one point, you are required to remove all your clothing and even required to walk naked so that your body can be inspected for tattoos. All of your tattoos will be noted in the medical record. Then you see the consular officer.

    A tattoo that sends the wrong message to the United States. interviewing officer can wreck your immigration case. United States immigration law permits a consular officer who has "reasonable ground to believe" that you are seeking to enter the United States to engage in unlawful activity to bar your entry into the United States.

    Gang tattoos tell a United States officer that you have been affiliated with a gang and are likely to commit crimes if admitted to the United States You probably won't get very far if you tell the officer that you were only a gang "wannabe" or that you quit the gang years ago.

    While refusing a person papers because he or she has tattoos may be very unfair, it happens more than you might think.

    The best course of action is to get your tattoos removed with a Q-switched laser. This is the "gold standard" for laser removal. Complete laser tattoo removal requires numerous treatment sessions, typically spaced at least seven weeks apart. There are Q-switched laser removal companies in Denver and Grand Junction.

  3. I have often said the most important thing an immigration attorney can do for you is to screen your case for bars to entry. These bars to entry will blow up your immigration case at the worst possible time-at the end of the case-after you have paid your filing fees and paid your attorney.

    To help you know and understand the most common bars to entry, we have posted a short video on our website. I want each of you to watch the video. There is one in Spanish and one in English. To find the video, go to www.tedhess.com , then click the tab for video center and play the Spanish or English video as your prefer.