Don’t Lie: An Immigration Golden Rule

The immigration process can be stressful and frustrating. It can be tempting to lie on an application or during an immigration interview to get it over with and keep the process “less complicated”. You may even know people who have lied and then successfully obtained their green card and even US citizenship. But lying on an immigration application, or to an immigration officer, is a bad idea. Please don’t do it!

  • One Lie Will Destroy Your Credibility

The immigration application is invasive and frustrating, and it may seem unnecessarily thorough. Let’s say you are applying for a marriage green card, and you were arrested once for something silly as a kid. Even though you know you copies of your arrest and court records, you’re having a hard time finding them or getting copies of everything you need. So, you leave that arrest at 17 off of your application. After all, it wasn’t anything serious, so why should USCIS care?

That kind of thinking is a big mistake. USCIS will investigate you, as they do all applicants. When USCIS finds that arrest record through its security check, you may be accused of fraud and your application could be denied for that reason—even if the arrest at 17 would have had absolutely not impacte on your ability to get the green card had you disclosed it and provided necessary documentation.

  • Lying is Grounds for Inadmissibility

If you lie or misrepresent something on an immigration application, you’re creating more problems. Lying is grounds for inadmissibility. Under 8 U.S.C. §1182(a)(6)(C)(i), “Any alien who, by fraud or willfully misrepresenting a material fact, seeks to procure (or has sought to procure or has procured) a visa, other documentation, or admission into the United States or other benefit provided under this chapter is inadmissible.”

If you’re concerned about something that you don’t want to include on your immigration application, or, if there’s something you are worried about discussing with an immigration officer during your interview, you should consult an experienced immigration attorney before you submit any application. An attorney can advise you, come up with workable solutions, and attend your immigration interview with you to help you explain the documentation or the facts of the situation. In some cases, an experienced attorney will tell you not to file for any immigration benefit for a certain period of time or, in some cases, ever. I’ve helped people around the world through complicated immigration situations for years, and I’m happy to guide you as well. So, don’t risk lying on an immigration application; I can help.