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Defenses To False Claim To Citizenship

Defenses to False Claim to Citizenship

In a previous article (The Immigration Consequences of False Claim to U.S. Citizenship), we discussed the severity of immigration consequences of a false claim to U.S. citizenship. The foreign national is deported and permanently barred from admission to the U.S.

In another article (Determining False Claim to U.S. Citizenship) we discussed that a finding of false claim to citizenship can only be made if the claim was 1) made knowingly, and 2) for the purpose or benefit under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) or any other federal or state law.

There must be sufficient oral or written evidence that would lead a reasonable person to find that the foreign national falsely represented him or herself to be a U.S. citizen.

How can the foreign national overcome a finding of false claim to citizenship?

A foreign national may overcome a finding of false claim to citizenship if he or she is able to establish one of the following facts, clearly and beyond doubt:

  • The representation was not false;
  • The false representation was not a representation of U.S. citizenship;
  • The false representation was made prior to September 30, 1996;
  • The false representation was not made for purposes or benefit under the INA or any other federal or state law; or
  • The applicant did not know the claim was false, lacks the legal capacity to appreciate the nature of the claim, or qualifies for the statutory exception.

If the officer determines that the applicant has established at least one of the above facts, then the applicant has successfully overcome the inadmissibility finding. If not, the inadmissibility finding remains and the applicant is inadmissible.

If you are concerned you may have made a false claim to U.S. citizenship, or have additional questions about this subject or any other immigration matter, please contact the Law Offices of Azita M. Mojarad, P.C. by e-mailing or calling 312.641-0771.

*This article addresses false claims to U.S. citizenship made on or after September 30, 1996.

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