An Immigration Attorney Fighting for Your American Dream ™

Deportation Defense, Green Card Applications, Asylum Claims, and More

Meeting Your Immigration Goals With Exceptional Legal Services

Ahmad Yakzan is an immigration attorney who has lived the American dream™. He wants to help his clients experience this life as well by providing unrivaled law services through American Dream ™ Law Office, PLLC. Our firm stops at nothing to help our clients with their deportation, green card application, asylum application, and other illegal immigration concerns.

Who We Are

Headquartered in Pinellas Park, Florida, The American Dream ™ Law Office, PLLC is a reputable family immigration law firm. Our reach is international, but our service is local. We have been in operation since 2015, ensuring consistent, attentive, and accessible legal services that meet the needs of every client.

About Our American Dream™ Shield

We initiated the American Dream™ Shield to assist criminal attorneys in providing better legal representations for immigrants. To do this, we advise these legal professionals on their cases and thoroughly dissect their trial's potential plea.

Our consulting work helps lawyers avoid entering their clients in an uninformed plea because of their unfamiliarity with the immigration consequences. Such actions and failure to explain any adverse effects on a person's immigration status are an attorney's liability, as ruled by the Court after Padilla v. Kentucky, 130 S. Ct. 1473 (2010).

What Is a Conviction for Immigration Purposes?

Pleas that may be inconsequential from a criminal perspective might adversely affect the immigration status of a lawyer's client. For example, a criminal attorney might fail to defend their immigrant client by pleading to a Withhold of Removal. This action would be counted as a win in criminal court but serves as a legal admission and a conviction for immigration purposes.

The Straightforward Definition

Section 101(a)(48) [8 USC 1101(a)(48)] of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), defines a conviction as follows:

  • (i) A judge or jury has found the alien guilty, or the alien has entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere or has admitted sufficient facts to warrant a finding of guilt, and
  • (ii) The judge has ordered some form of punishment, penalty, or restraint on the alien's liberty to be imposed.
  • (B) Any reference to a term of imprisonment or a sentence with respect to an offense is deemed to include the period of incarceration or confinement ordered by a court of law regardless of any suspension of the imposition or execution of that imprisonment or sentence in whole or in part.

Criminal attorneys should pay close attention to the language in section (i), which states that mere admissions of facts are sufficient for finding guilt. This means that their clients may avoid a criminal conviction but will face harsh immigration consequences due to their on-record professions of certain acts. That is why it is best to consult with Attorney Ahmad Yakzan and the American Dream™ Shield before entering a plea.

What Are Some of the Possible Consequences and How Are Crimes Classified Under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA)?

Several classifications of crimes under the INA may lead to possible removal from the United States. A crime might meet many definitions under the INA, leading to different consequences. Here are some of the possible classifications under the Act:

  • Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude (CIMT): The Board of Immigration Appeals defined CIMT as crimes that are “base, vile, or depraved, and contrary to the accepted rules of morality.” See Matter of Franklin, 20 I&N Dec. 867, 868 (BIA 1994). CIMTs include fraud crimes and kidnapping, which invoke grounds for deportability under immigration and bar certain types of relief. However, some of these crimes are waivable under the Act.
  • Aggravated Felonies: As listed and defined in 8 U.S.C. §1101(a)(43), aggravated felonies range from murder to illicit trafficking and conspiracies. These crimes make an immigrant inadmissible under INA §212, permanently unable to apply for naturalization, or deportable under INA §237.
How Do You Determine if a Crime Has Immigration Consequences?

Immigration and federal courts use the categorical or noncategorical approaches to determine if a specific crime has immigration consequences. The former means that a crime does not have any adverse outcomes if it does not match a corresponding federal statute. Meanwhile, a modified categorical approach allows the court to reach beyond the record of conviction to ascertain if a crime has immigration consequences.

How Can the American Dream™ Shield Help You and Your Clients?

We can aid you, the criminal attorney, limit your liability and exposure to malpractice by assisting you in thoroughly analyzing the facts and the record of conviction. Attorney Yakzan has represented clients in immigration courts and has successfully argued these cases. His experience helps him give you sound advice on your cases.

An Immigration Attorney Who Knows What You’re Going Through

As an immigrant himself, Attorney Ahmad Yakzan is dedicated to represent you and help you reach your American Dream™. His passion for representing his clients has earned him an excellent reputation in the legal community, setting him apart from other immigration law practitioners.

His Journey

Attorney Ahmad Yakzan came to the United States as a young man to pursue a dream that seemed elusive at times. He struggled but knew what he was aiming for was worth it because he met people who helped him with his goals. Although the dream seemed distant, he carried on.

Read More

Our Services

Why Choose Our Firm for Immigration Legal Services

Competitive Prices

Spare no expense in attaining and protecting your American Dream™ with the help of Attorney Ahmad Yakzan. Our small consultation retainer will be credited towards our legal fees when you retain our office. We offer competitive rates for excellent legal services.

Flexible Communication

For your convenience, we offer in-person, phone, or teleconferencing consultations. Attorney Ahmad Yakzan would be glad to accommodate you in one of our offices in St. Petersburg and Tampa, Florida.

Ultimate Convenience

Attorney Ahmad Yakzan is your reliable immigration attorney from St. Petersburg Tampa, Florida to Washington, D.C. We also have offices that are conveniently located to serve you in Clearwater, Dunedin, New Port Richey, Oldsmar, Land o’ Lakes, Plant City, Lakeland, and Zephyrhills.

Our Client Reviews

Our past clients have given us many 5-star reviews. These individuals include:

Greg

“Mr. Ahmad Yakzan provided a level of expert professional service that was exceptional in every way. I was on the other side of the world, which presented an additional layer of challenges in terms of processing my spouse's visa. Mr. Yakzan was always able to find times between time zones to speak when needed. While the process is time-consuming, it would have been overwhelming without the expertise of Mr. Yakzan.”

Ricardo

“Mr. Yakzan showed me his professionalism from the start and also told me the choices and the hurdles I had ahead, but his knowledge of the immigration law was and is more than what I was expecting. I’ve been in this wonderful land of dreams and opportunities for many years and thought I was safe for many reasons, but I broke the law, and my dreams were fading away very quickly.”

Heather

“Previous to employing Atty Yakzan, I consulted and hired two other atty’s who promised the sun, moon, and stars with their inflated skill sets. I fired one, and the other had my case looped in the court for a year and a half doing nothing but wasting my time and money. When I consulted with Atty Yakzan, he took the time to listen to me and comprehend my needs. He shot straight with me and promised no outcomes...”

book titled "your dream is my dream"

“Your Dream Is My Dream” Book by Ahmad Yakzan

Learn how Attorney Yakzan’s personal immigration story can help you achieve the American dream ™.

statue of liberty

Legal Information You Need to Know

Inadmissibility Under the Immigration and Naturalization Act

Inadmissibility is the inability of an immigrant to be admitted to the United States. These grounds are listed in INA Section 212. Several grounds of inadmissibility, including health, criminal activity, national security, fraud and misrepresentation, prior removals, and unlawful presence in the US.

There are waivers available for some of these grounds, including fraud or misrepresentation. Waivers are also permitted, in some cases, if the individual has a “qualifying relative” who would experience undue hardship if the person is not admitted. Some grounds, like terrorism, do not have such waivers.

Public Health Grounds of Inadmissibility

Some health conditions ban some individuals from being admitted to the US, such as

  • Chancroids
  • Gonorrhea
  • Granuloma Inguinale
  • Infectious Leprosy
  • Lymphogranuloma Venereum
  • Infectious Syphilis
  • Active Tuberculosis

The law also bars individuals with certain mental and physical disorders that are likely to reoccur from being admitted to the US. People who are also prone to substance abuse are barred from being admitted to the US. However, some of these grounds are waivable under Section 212(g) of the Immigration and Naturalization Act.

Criminal Grounds of Inadmissibility
  • CIMTs
  • Violation of any controlled substance law in the United States or abroad
  • Multiple criminal convictions
  • Drug trafficking
  • Prostitution
  • Commercialized vice/s
  • The assertion of Immunity from Prosecution
  • Violations of religious freedom
  • Human trafficking
  • Money laundering

The definition of these crimes is complicated. For example, a Crime Involving Moral Turpitude (CIMT) is not defined under the law but covers several crimes as classified by the federal courts and the Board of Immigration.

Fraud or Misrepresentation Ground of Inadmissibility
  • The person made a false statement, written or oral, to a United States government officer
  • The misrepresentation must be material, meaning that it goes to the heart of the benefit
  • The person must have intended to make such misrepresentation
Unlawful Presence and Prior Removals Ground of Inadmissibility

The law bars individuals who have accrued unlawful presence in the US from entering the country. Immigrants who have also been removed previously will also be inadmissible. An immigrant who accrues 180 days of unlawful presence in the US will be barred from entering the country for three years. Meanwhile, an individual who accrues more than 360 days of unlawful presence will be barred for 10 years.

Immigrants who have been previously removed from the United States are also barred from reentry. However, all of these individuals may apply for waivers of inadmissibility if they have “qualifying relatives” who would experience hardship if the individual is not admitted.

Waivers of Inadmissibility

Certain individuals who are inadmissible under these grounds may apply for a Waiver of Inadmissibility using Form I-601, or Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility. This waiver would be approved if the person shows that his qualifying relatives would experience undue hardship if the person were not admitted.

Individuals who have accrued unlawful presence and are in the United States may apply for a provisional waiver of inadmissibility before they depart. This form of waiver is filed by using I-601A, or Application for Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver.

Removal of Conditions on Residence (I-751)

The Marriage Fraud Amendments passed by Congress in 1986 established the Conditional Residence classification. The main goal of these amendments is to prevent fraud in marriage-based Adjustment of Status applications.

The amendments mandate that the beneficiary of an Adjustment of Status case needs to apply for removal of conditions on the permanent residence by filing an I-751 application 90 days before the second anniversary of the approval of their initial Adjustment of Status application.

Who and When Do You Have To File Your Petition?

A beneficiary of any marriage-based I-130 petition, filed by a United States citizen or a lawful permanent residence, must file the I-751 application if he or she were granted Conditional Permanent Residence initially. The beneficiary would be granted this status if his or her marriage to a United States citizen or permanent resident is less than two years old.

The Beneficiary must file the petition 90 days before the expiration of Conditional Residence. However, beneficiaries who have been married to the Petitioner for more than two years need not do so since they receive permanent residence without any conditions.

Do You Have To File Jointly With Your Spouse?

If you are still married to the Petitioner spouse at the time of filing, you should apply jointly. A joint petition would not be possible if you and your spouse are separated or divorced. It is advisable to apply for one of the waivers discussed below.

You Have Divorced From Your Spouse. What Should You Do Now?

If you are no longer living with your spouse, or you are now divorced, you may apply for one of the available waivers under INA §216(c)(4). These waivers include:

  • Extreme Hardship Waiver – for applicants whose removal would lead to extreme hardship to a qualifying relative
  • Good Faith Marriage – for an applicant who entered the marriage in good faith, and the marriage was terminated other than the death of the Petitioner spouse
  • Battered Spouse Waiver – available if the Conditional Resident was abused or battered by the Petitioner during the period of conditional residence

A beneficiary does not have to wait to apply for one of these waivers until 90 days before the conditions expiration and may file at any time.

What Evidence Should You File?

There are several decisions from the BIA in dealing with the sufficiency of the evidence in these cases. Some of the evidence that you should consider including in your petition include:

  • Birth Certificates for Any Children
  • Health and Car Insurance
  • Joint Mortgages and Other Joint loans
  • Utility and Phone Bills

This is not an exhaustive list and you should consult an immigration attorney before filing your petition.

Your Petition Was Denied, Now What?

Under the Immigration and Naturalization Act, a denial of the I-751 petition by the Service leads to the initiation of removal proceedings against the Applicant. The Applicant may renew the application before the Immigration Judge or renew his or her waiver applications. It is important to highlight the fact that the Applicant remains a Lawful Permanent Residence until the immigration judge enters a final decision.

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