We often forget that many traffic offenses are also criminal offenses, and may have collateral consequences beyond the courthouse. Immigration consequences are one of those collateral consequences. The law is complex, changes quickly, and there is no clear “certain answer” easy referral chart. Basic ideas that should trigger concern include if any sentence is potentially greater than a year, any crime of violence, and any crime or moral turpitude. Of course, it also makes a difference if an individual is a lawful permanent resident, has a non-permanent visa, or is an undocumented alien.P
Please talk to the attorney at Garret, Walker and Aycoth, trusted attorneys, if you have any doubts or questions. Few “traffic offenses” will endanger a person; however, some impaired driving charges, felony traffic offenses, accidents causing injury with high restitution, or even a combination of offenses, such as a Habitual DWI conviction coupled with a DWLR conviction, merit review.
The real danger, of course, remains in the ability of the government to place an immigration “hold” on your client if they are incarcerated for any amount of time, pre-or-post conviction.