Monday, March 28, 2011

Protection from Deportation/Removal for Same-Sex Couple

For the first time, according to Voice of America, a U.S. judge has suspended the deportation of the foreign-born same-sex spouse of an American citizen. Read full article here.

This is another important victory in the fight for equal rights for same-sex couples. However, despite the victory, this immigration judge’s decision is not binding on any local, state or federal court, including any immigration court. Likewise, the decision does not affect USCIS’s policy of adhering to DOMA’s definition of marriage.

We at Glickman Turley LLP support and strive for equal protection under the law for same-sex couples. We look forward to future progress towards this important goal. Please contact us if you have questions and would like to set up a consultation with an attorney.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Good Case Interpretting Padilla v. Kentucky

Our attorneys represent clients on motions to vacate criminal convictions. Success on a motion to vacate is sometimes the only way that a Lawful Permanent Resident can defend himself against deportation/removal from the U.S. An important case about motions to vacate was recenlty decided by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

On March 11, 2011 in US. v. Bonilla, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals held:

"A criminal defendant who face almost certain deportation is entitled to know more than that it is possible that a guilty plea could lead to removal; he is entitled to know that is a virtual certainty."

US v. Bonilla, No. 09-10307, 3428 (9th Cir. 2011).

This holding emphasizes the U.S. Supreme Court decision Padilla v. Kentucky that held:

"It is our responsibility under the Constitution to ensure that no criminal defendant—whether a citizen or not—is left to the "mercies of incompetent counsel." Richardson, 397 U.S., at 771, 90 S.Ct. 1441. To satisfy this responsibility, we now hold that counsel must inform her client whether his plea carries a risk of deportation. Our longstanding Sixth Amendment precedents, the seriousness of deportation as a consequence of a criminal plea, and the concomitant impact of deportation on families living lawfully in this country demand no less."

Padilla v. Kentucky, 130 S.Ct. 1438, 1486 (2010).

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

US v. Halloway in Immigration Court

Glickman Turley LLP has taken to the Boston Immigration Court the issues presented in the First Circuit Decision, US v. Halloway, No. 09-1232(1st Cir. 2011). Specifically, we argue that assault and battery on a public official (M.G.L. c. 265, Sec. 13D) is not a crime of violence, and therefore the respondent cannot be removable as an aggravated felon if convicted of ABPO and sentenced to over one year term of imprisonment.

This new interpretation of First Circuit law would permit a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR)to apply for a new "green card" through cancellation of removal at the Immigration Court.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Commercial Landlords Beware!

In a precedent setting case issued today, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial court found that under G.L. c. 186, § 19, after receiving the required notice of an unsafe condition, not caused by the tenant, a landlord of any real estate owes a duty to exercise reasonable care to remedy the unsafe condition. If a tenant or any person lawfully on the premises is injured as a result of the failure to correct the unsafe condition within a reasonable time, the injured party has a right of action in tort against the landlord for damages. A landlord may not obtain a waiver of this duty in any lease or other rental agreement; any such waiver "shall be void and unenforceable. This law is for the first time applied to commercial leases. Previously, it was applied only in the residential real estate setting. The name of the case is Bishop v. TES Realty.