It’s hard enough to immigrate to the US legally even when everything goes smoothly. But what happens if you make a mistake on your paperwork, or if someone helping you makes a mistake? Some paperwork errors are more serious than others, and seemingly small mistakes can turn into bigger mistakes.
If you think you made an error on your immigration paperwork, or you think someone else did, don’t try to fix it yourself. It’s too easy to make more mistakes, repeat the same mistake, get confused about the form, and otherwise “dig yourself into a hole.”
Contact Boston immigration attorney Giselle M. Rodriguez. Giselle helps clients with the full range of immigration challenges, including immigration paperwork and paperwork errors. She is bilingual (English & Spanish), and works with clients throughout Greater Boston, Massachusetts, and beyond. Giselle is available for consultations 7 days a week (by appointment). Contact Giselle today to discuss your case and your application, or read on to learn more about filling out your immigration forms and what to do if something’s gone wrong.
“My wife and I had a great experience working with Giselle. She successfully help me complete the Fiance visa petition for wife when she was in Haiti. I hired her when the USCIS sent me a request for more evidence. Giselle was very thorough and was very responsive, crafting a plan on how we would repond. I believe her assistance was key to the success we had thus far, completing the first interview and getting the visa. I would recommend her to anyone trying to navigate the immigration system who has had similar problems.” – Jephte L. (see review on Google Maps)
“Giselle helped me throughout my Green Card renewal process and the experience was great – She is now helping me in petitioning for my wife and son in India.” – Jangchup T. (see review on Google Maps)
What happens if you make a mistake on an immigration form?
Any number of problems can result from an error on a USCIS immigration form, whether the mistake is large or small, intentional or accidental. Those problems may include:
- Rejection of your application or request
- Delays in your application or request
- Unnecessary separation of you from a spouse or family member
- Secondary problems and other unintended consequences of the USCIS not understanding your situation, which may affect your employment, legal status, or ability to reunite with family any time soon
- Lifetime bans from the United States (in extreme cases)
- Needing to redo and resubmit your paperwork
- Penalties or fines
- Filing fees
- Time, confusion, frustration, and worry
What are the most common immigration paperwork errors?
The most common errors on immigration forms happen when applicants try to handle the process on their own. That is understandable, because on the surface the immigration process can look straightforward: You find the form for your situation, you fill it out, and you send copies of the application that USCIS asks you to submit. It seems simple.
Sometimes the process is that simple, but often it is not. Many applicants struggle to understand what the form is asking. Confusing common forms include forms I-130, I-129F, and I-90. Even native English speakers often make mistakes, assuming the form means one thing when in reality it means something else. Those difficulties are greater if one is new to speaking English.
Even worse, many people run immigration scams or promise “document preparation services” in return for large sums of money. Those people are not legal professionals and may make a mistake on your form out of ignorance. They get your money either way, and may not care much about what happens to you.
How can you fix immigration paperwork errors?
If you have made a mistake on your immigration form you should contact USCIS as soon as you receive a notice that the government has received your form. You can call USCIS, tell them about the error, and ask them to correct it. You may want to work with an immigration attorney before attempting to correct your application.
If USCIS has already acted on your application they may notice the error before you do. They may reject your application, force you to restart the process, send a Request for Evidence form, or require another remedy. You will probably need to pay additional fines and fees.
What immigration paperwork errors are big problems?
Lying and forgery are always mistakes that will keep you from getting a visa. Misunderstanding certain questions about past run-ins with the police can also derail the immigration process. For example, one question asks whether you’ve ever been charged with a crime. Those who have been charged but not convicted often answer “no,” believing the two terms are interchangeable. In reality you’d need to answer “yes,” even if you were acquitted or the charges were dismissed. Very counterintuitive, but it can sink your application.
USCIS officials are highly suspicious of oversights, even if you made innocent and honest mistakes. They will almost always accuse you of lying, even if you did not try to misrepresent yourself. In some cases those kinds of mistakes can lead to a lifetime ban from the United States.
Get your immigration paperwork done right the first time or fixed now by an immigration attorney in Boston
The simplest way to handle mistakes on your paperwork is to make sure they never happen at all.
Or if you think you made an error, an attorney can help you correct that error in a way that doesn’t do more damage your immigration application or complicate your situation, and maybe helps you get the outcome you want.
Contact the Law Offices of Giselle M. Rodriguez in Boston to get your paperwork fixed or done right the first time. I have helped clients in all kinds of immigration situations, and may be able to help you, too. You’ll save time, money, and frustration, and you’ll get peace of mind about your chances to immigrate to the United States.