The term “ aggravated felony” refers to a certain classification of crimes under federal or state law that has serious immigration consequences. No matter what your immigration status may be, if you are a non-citizen and are convicted of an aggravated felony, you are subject to removal and will be unable to reenter the United States in the future. If you are in this situation, you also will not be eligible for many different forms of relief from deportation. Although an aggravated felony seemingly refers to a serious crime, the fact is that the term encompasses many crimes, some of which are very minor, nonviolent offenses. The crime in question does not even necessarily have to be classified a felony under the law; in some instances, conviction of some misdemeanors can lead to a finding that you committed an aggravated felony. The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) lists more than 30 crimes that qualify as aggravated felonies, including tax evasion where a loss to the government is more than $10,000. A conviction for any of the criminal offenses enumerated in the INA creates grounds for deportation. This is true even if the crime was not considered to be an aggravated felony at the time of the conviction. For example, if you are convicted of a crime that is not considered to be an aggravated felony and ten years later, it is added to the INA as an aggravated felony, then you are immediately subject to deportation. The penalties for an aggravated felony conviction are especially severe because they remove many of the possible grounds for relief from removal. If you are not a lawful permanent resident and you are convicted of an aggravated felony, you can be immediately removed from the country without a hearing before an immigration judge. You will be ineligible for any form of discretionary relief, such as asylum, and you will have no appeals rights to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). In fact, immigration officials can remove you from the country as soon as two weeks following the entry of the removal order. Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C., has the experience that you need when you are facing deportation charges. We know how to investigate the facts that support your case, consider your options, and assess whether you have any legal defenses that may allow you to avoid deportation and remain in the U.S. Contact the Oakland immigration attorneys at our office today and learn how we potentially can help you and your family through this difficult, emotional, and tumultuous situation.