Margulis v. Holder

Canadian immigration officers refused to allow Margulis to “enter” Canada, but when he attempted to return, U.S. customs officers discovered that he had a criminal record and placed him in removal proceedings under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2) even though his crimes had resulted in only 30 days of jail time. A lawful permanent resident is removable if he commits nontrivial crimes in the U.S.; if he leaves the U.S. he cannot be readmitted for at least five years, 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(9), (a)(9)(B). Immigration authorities can waive inadmissibility if the crimes that made the alien deportable are minor, 8 U.S.C. 1182(h) (section 212(h)). Margulis asked that the removal proceedings be terminated and that he be placed in admissibility proceedings. The Board of Immigration Appeals refused, finding that Margulis had never “entered” Canada and so could not have returned to the U.S. The Seventh Circuit remanded, reasoning that immigration officers did not treat Margulis as a lawful entrant, but deemed him already present in the U.S.; if they had thought he was seeking admission they would have placed him in admissibility proceedings rather than removal proceedings. View "Margulis v. Holder" on Justia Law