Supreme Court Issues Decision Helpful to Immigrants This Week

The Supreme Court issued an important decision, Vartelas v. Holder, No. 10-1211, rejecting the retroactive application of a provision of a law passed by Congress in 1996 that has prevented many lawful permanent residents (LPRs) from returning to the United States after a trip abroad. Citing the "deeply rooted presumption" against applying new laws retroactively, the Court ruled 6-3 that LPRs who temporarily leave the country cannot be denied readmission on account of criminal convictions that occurred before the law took effect. The Justice Department argued that LPRs with certain criminal convictions may be barred from re-entering the United States any time they leave the country—even if the law in effect at the time of their guilty pleas did not make them eligible for deportation or ineligible for reentry to the United States. The Supreme Court rejected this argument, noting that the government’s interpretation effectively prevented such LPRs from ever leaving the country. There are still serious consequences, however, for certain LPR's with criminal convictions after 1996, who leave the country and try to return. While, historically, they may have had no problems returning in the past, many of these people are now being arrested at the airport upon their return after short visits abroad. Our law firm of Coane and Associates, PLLC continues to represent LPR's facing these exact problems. __________________________________________________________________________________________________About the author: Bruce Coane is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment law, and, immigration law, with offices in Florida and Texas. He may be reached at [email protected], 713-850-0066 or 305-538-6800.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Contact Us To Get Started

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Houston Office
5177 Richmond Ave.
Suite 770
Houston, TX 77056

Phone: 713-850-0066
Fax: 713-850-8528
Map & Directions

Miami Beach Office
407 Lincoln Rd.
Suite 11B
Miami Beach, FL 33139

Phone: 305-538-6800
Fax: 866-647-8296
Map & Directions