Domestic problems could become an immigration issue

What happens in your home may not stay in your home. If a family member accuses you of domestic violence, you could face all sorts of consequences. One of these could be damaging your chance to remain in the country.

Immigration authorities will check your history when reviewing a visa or citizenship application. If they see you have been in trouble with the law, this could count against you. Some criminal convictions are severe enough to lead to deportation.

Can an undocumented person claim domestic violence?

If a member of your household threatens to report you to the police for domestic abuse, you might assume their lack of legal status will stop them. However, the law gives them the right to seek a protection order against you, as it does for anyone who lives in the country.

Can someone accuse me of domestic abuse if they have no injuries or marks?

Domestic violence does not only refer to physical violence. You may never have laid a hand on anyone. Yet, your partner could accuse you of other forms of domestic abuse. These could include:

  • Psychological abuse: This can mean different things to different people. It could involve threats of violence or manipulation. For example, in an argument, you tell your partner you will report her to the smugglers she escaped from.
  • Financial abuse: You may struggle to pay the rent and put food on the table. Your partner may accuse you of keeping them an economic hostage with no access to money.

You need a solid defense to accusations of domestic abuse. A criminal conviction could result in a custodial sentence. A criminal record could affect your chance to apply for jobs, housing or stay in the United States.