What does Supreme Court’s ruling in DAPA and Expanded DACA mean?

Posted on June 30, 2016 by Kathryn Karam

What does Supreme Court’s ruling in DAPA and Expanded DACA mean?

Last week, the Supreme Court issued a 4-4 decision on the state of Texas’s challenge to President Obama’s proposed executive immigration programs. These programs included the Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) program, which would have allowed some parents of U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents to apply for a work permit in the United States and to be protected from deportation, and an expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that was initially announced on June 15, 2012. The original DACA program allowed people who arrived in the U.S. before age 16 and were under age 31 when the program was introduced to apply for work authorization and protection from deportation. The expansion of the DACA program had been announced in order to allow more people to qualify for protection under DACA. 

Immigration lawyer: Humanizing the Immigration Process

Posted on June 21, 2016 by Kathryn Karam


Immigration Lawyer: Humanizing the immigration process

Last week, I was honored to have an interview published in J-Vibe Magazine, which focuses on stories and issues that impact Houston. My interview was titled Humanizing the Immigration Process.

There is so much I have to share about my experiences working with immigrants to the United States. A large portion of my desire to help people with their immigration issues comes from my own personal experience of having lived in another country. Between my junior year of college and my first year of law school, I spent about 3 years in China. While there, I experienced a variety of emotions – I felt almost infatuated with my new surroundings and their differences from my home. I felt unsure of how to conduct myself as I learned that a completely different set of habits existed in this new place. I felt doubtful about how to communicate as I stepped off school grounds or away from my friends to do anything from run errands to travel to a tourist destination. I felt angry when it was obvious that I was being singled out, or talked about as if I couldn’t understand what was being said about me. But I also felt amazed that people who spoke a totally different language and had a completely different culture could stop to help me – someone so obviously different – to find a bus stop or explain to a store clerk what I needed. I felt heartened that despite my differences, the people around me listened and tried to understand me as I struggled to speak their language.  I felt grateful for the warmth and hospitality I was shown as someone who many Chinese considered a guest from another part of the world.

Immigration Lawyer in Houston: Tips for Human Resources Professionals

Posted on June 13, 2016 by Kathryn Karam

Are You a Human Resources Professional Handling Immigration Issues?  Here are some tips from an immigration lawyer in Houston that might make your life easier.

If you work in Human Resources, particularly International HR or Global Mobility, you know the difficulties of immigration compliance and employment verification. The field is highly technical, but at the same time, unusual situations and unexpected issues frequently come up. Your role is ensure that your company is handling its HR matters - including the immigration issues - properly. 

Driver's License for Immigrants

Posted on June 08, 2016 by Kathryn Karam

Having Trouble Getting a Driver's License due to your immigrant status or document issues? Read This:

When I was still a law student, the U.S. Congress passed the REAL ID Act, which was intended to help prevent document fraud and the procurement of false identification documents by requiring states to comply with new federal requirements contained in the Act. Among other things, the REAL ID Act required that states enter into an understanding with the Department of Homeland Security and develop methods to verify that a person applying for a driver’s license is lawfully present in the United States before issuing a license. In other words, the Act required states to begin checking a person’s immigration status before issuing a driver’s license – even if it was a renewal of the person’s license.

US Immigration Process: Honesty is the Best Policy

Posted on June 02, 2016 by Kathryn Karam


US Immigration Process: Honesty is the Best Policy

It’s not unusual for someone to ask me if something they do will affect their US immigration process or status in the U.S. –  my job is to advise my clients and assist them with these decisions. My clients run ideas by me all the time, so it’s not unusual for a client to approach me and ask how anyone (meaning anyone in the U.S. government) would find out if they did something that might hurt their chances to stay in the U.S. Often I am asked travel-related questions such as this: “If the U.S. Customs and Border Protection people don’t stamp my passport when I leave the country, how would anyone know when I left the U.S.?” Usually people ask me this because they’re thinking they might be able to list a different date on an application. In citizenship applications, most people must show that they’ve spent a certain amount of time in the U.S. If someone hasn’t spent enough time here, listing a different date that they left the U.S. might help them appear to qualify even if they don’t.

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