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JD Singh

Urgent Help Required N400 N445

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Here is the scoop. My naturalization application has been approved and am awaiting for my oath taking ceremony date. Unfortunately, I received a citation of possession of marijuana under an ounce along the drug paraphernalia in the same instance (but different offense). This is my first time getting a marijuana citation. I've read the USCIS rules, which say that there is an exception to the controlled substance charges if it is only single time offense of marijuana possession under 30gms.

 

Here are my questions:

  • If these are the only charges and there are no other charges (like to sell, or intent to distribute), should I plead guilty and pay all the fines and take the relevant paperwork to the oath ceremony?
  • Should I fight the charges (can become expensive, which might be an issue)?

 

I am more or less inclined to accept the conviction since it will fall under the exception category. Any help, suggestions is appreciated. Thanks much !!

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**Duplicate thread removed; please do not post the same topic in multiple forums and keep all questions related to this matter to this thread**


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 🇷🇺  CR-1 via DCF in Moscow* (2016-2017) 🇺🇸 Info about my DCF experience here and here.

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26-Jul-2016: Married abroad (USC + Russian husband) 👩‍❤️‍👨
21-Dec-2016: I-130 filed at Moscow USCIS field office*
29-Dec-2016: I-130 approved! Yay! 🎊 

17-Jan-2017: Case number received

21-Mar-2017: Medical Exam completed

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29-Mar-2017: CR-1 Visa received (via mail)

02-Apr-2017: USCIS Immigrant (GC) Fee paid

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21-Jul-2017: No SSN after three weeks; applied in person at the SSA

22-Jul-2017: GC arrived in the mail 📬

31-Jul-2017: SSN arrived via mail, hurrah!

 

*NOTE: The USCIS Field Office in Moscow is now CLOSED.

 

I-90 GC Replacment (for Erroneous GC)

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31-Jul-2018: USCIS Appointment at local field office..

22-Aug-2018: Mailed GC back to USCIS in response to RFE

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Did you get the citation after the interview? 


Spoiler

My timeline:
2011-10-31 US Entry with CR1
2013-09-02 ROC filed
2013-09-12 NOA
2014-03-05 Biometrics
2014-03-24 Approved
2014-05-05 Green card received
2015-04-23 Divorced
2015-06-17 Remarried
2016-08-02 N400 filed under 5 year rule
2016-08-12 NOA
2016-09-02 Biometrics
2017-05-04 Interview
2017-07-05 Oath Ceremony
Husband's timeline:
2013-01-16 US Entry
2017-07-05 Filed for AOS
2017-08-07 NOA
2017-08-23 Biometrics
2017-10-30 Received approval letters for EAD & AP
2017-11-02 Combo Card received
2018-12-13 Interview date
2019-01-02 Approved
2019-01-09 10 year Green Card received
Stepson's timeline:
2019-01-17 Filed I-130
2019-02-04 NOA


 

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You won't be able to take your oath with the court date pending.

 

I believe this may now cause you to fail the "good moral character" requirement of the naturalisation process.


Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

Day 341 (12/10/18) Interview was scheduled for 1/14/19

Day 376 (1/14/19) Interview

Day 385 (1/23/19) Denied

Day 400 (2/7/19) Denial revoked; N-400 approved; oath ceremony set for 2/14/19

Day 407 (2/14/19) Oath ceremony in Dallas, TX

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This is from one of the USCIS websites ...

 

.....A criminal conviction of an offense relating to a federally-defined controlled substance,including marijuana,can make a non citizen both deportable and inadmissible. There is an automatic exception to the deportation ground, and the possibility of obtaining a discretionary waiver of the inadmissibility ground,for one or more convictions arising from a single incident that involved possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana, or being under the influence, or possessing paraphernalia for personal, of marijuana.This also is not an bar to establishing good moral character....

 

Don't I fall under that category?

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Right, but you said you were charged with two separate offences: marijuana possession, and also paraphernalia.

 

You should consult with an experienced immigration attorney before doing anything.


Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

Day 341 (12/10/18) Interview was scheduled for 1/14/19

Day 376 (1/14/19) Interview

Day 385 (1/23/19) Denied

Day 400 (2/7/19) Denial revoked; N-400 approved; oath ceremony set for 2/14/19

Day 407 (2/14/19) Oath ceremony in Dallas, TX

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I didn't notice the "one or more convictions arising from a single incident" part. Hopefully that would cover you.

 

I would absolutely still consult with an experienced immigration attorney to double-check that that's correct though. And what I said above still applies: you won't be able to take your oath with this case pending. It would need to be disposed of first.


Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

Day 341 (12/10/18) Interview was scheduled for 1/14/19

Day 376 (1/14/19) Interview

Day 385 (1/23/19) Denied

Day 400 (2/7/19) Denial revoked; N-400 approved; oath ceremony set for 2/14/19

Day 407 (2/14/19) Oath ceremony in Dallas, TX

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Yeah that's what I am getting at. If I plead guilty, pay the fines and whatever the court says and bring the certified copied to the oath taking ceremony, I am hoping they would allow to complete the ceremony since I fall under the exception category. I'll definitely consult an attorney before pleading guilty to make sure I do fall under the exception category.

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18 hours ago, JD Singh said:

Yeah that's what I am getting at. If I plead guilty, pay the fines and whatever the court says and bring the certified copied to the oath taking ceremony, I am hoping they would allow to complete the ceremony since I fall under the exception category. I'll definitely consult an attorney before pleading guilty to make sure I do fall under the exception category.

If the court case hasn't happened/closed by the time the oath date rolls around, you won't be able to take your oath.

If the court case ends up being a fine PLUS a period of probation, you may be refused participation in taking your oath until the probationary period is completed (at the discretion of the officer/agent).

 

Either way, make sure you disclose the arrest on the back of the N445 form.

 

Edited by Going through

Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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Thanks for the information. By the way, I was never arrested and was only given a citation. No finger printing and nothing happened. The officer told me that it's like a speeding ticket. How complicated is the procedure to re-schedule the oath taking ceremony?

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I have no legal background so my advice isn't legal in nature here. However, if I faced what you faced, I think I would attempt to withdraw the n400, hire a criminal attorney to get the charges reduced (perhaps they can get you free of the paraphernalia charge), serve out whatever probationary period that is issued, and re-apply once that is over. The future $700 n400 application fee that you're trying to avoid isn't worth it in view of the implications that your citation implies. But as others have stated, an immigration attorney will offer better advice on your existing and/or future applications. Good luck!


Marriage: 2014-02-23 - Colombia    ROC interview/completed: 2018-08-16 - Albuquerque
CR1 started : 2014-06-06           N400 started: 2018-04-24
CR1 completed/POE : 2015-07-13     N400 interview: 2018-08-16 - Albuquerque
ROC started : 2017-04-14 CSC     Oath ceremony: 2018-09-24 – Santa Fe

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