Legal Question in Immigration Law in Washington

Send back home!!!

My girlfriend wanted to come into the US after getting a 1 year visa from the US Embassy in Singapore that is currently under the visa waiver program so that she can stay here with me for about 10 months.( her return date). She was denied entry into the US from immigration because they claims that she intend to immigrant here and not return to her country. That is not our intention and is also the reason for buying an open ticket and obtaining the 1-year visa. Now we have to pay for the tickets and redo everything again but not knowing if she can get in. I feel that immigration is not professional enough, if she want to immigrant here illegally, why would we go through so much trouble to buy an open ticket and obtain proper visas.

Is there a way we can seek compensation?. Please help.

Asked on 6/15/08, 4:08 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Tahmina Watson Watson Immigration Law, LLC

Re: Send back home!!!

Hello there, I'm sorry your girlfriend was sent back home. Her answers probably made the immigration officers suspect she would remain in the US. In my opinion, you need to rethink your strategy in getting her to the US. The two options before you are either marriage or engagement. If you would like to discuss your matter further, please do not hesitate to call me for a free telephone consultation.

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Answered on 6/16/08, 2:17 pm

Amir John Showrai The Pacific Law Firm, PLLC

Re: Send back home!!!

Unfortunately, there is no way to seek compensation for USCIS or US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) decisions, no matter how in error they are. Even if they sent your girlfriend to Guantanamo Bay, she'd still get nothing.

You have to understand that a great many young, single women from southeast Asia tend to come to the US on visitor visas and then meet handsome American men and fall in love, get married fast, and then they may remain here while they receive their green cards. After two years of marriage, they often divorce, keep their green cards, eventually become citizens, and then sponsor their family to come to the US as immigrants.

When your girlfriend arrives at customs, CBP checks into whether your girlfriend is trying to do exactly what I described above when they interview her. I would bet money that as soon as they heard that she has an American boyfriend that she intends to visit for ten months, that ended their questioning and she was sent home.

Fairly or unfairly, if you have a boyfriend in the US and you are from Singapore, expect not to be allowed to enter- that is what I'd tell you if you were my client. I am not saying this would happen to her every time, but 90 out of 100 times, she'd be headed back.

If I were you, I'd examine my relationship with her, and if you really want to explore it some more with her before getting married, then go to Singapore and carefully spend time with her (be mindful of cultural and legal taboos about unmarried couples). If you then want to marry her, either do it there, or propose and come back, with the intention of marrying her within 90 days of her entry with a fiance visa.

Either way, we can very quickly prepare and send off paperwork to then get her over here.

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Answered on 6/16/08, 2:25 am

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