adjustment of status- The procedure for converting status to that of a permanent resident.
admission- Permission by an immigration officer admitting a person to the U.S.
deportation- The process of ejecting someone from the U.S.
expedited removal- Procedure used at a port of entry in which the INS officer has the power to order a person returned without a hearing. It applies to persons entering without a travel document and where the person is believed to have lied or misrepresented himself in getting the travel document to come to the U.S.
illegal- An act which violates a statute, regulation or ordinance and which is punishable by a fine, jail or both.
Immigration and Naturalization Service- An agency within the U.S. Department of Justice that is charged with administering the immigration laws at the border and within the U.S. Often called the "INS".
INS- The acronym for the "Immigration and Naturalization Service".
aggravated felony- A serious crime that requires a non-citizen's removal from the U.S. and prohibits the person from seeking relief from removal and most immigration benefits.
alien - A person who is not a citizen of the hosting country. There are resident aliens officially permitted to live in the country and illegal aliens who have otherwise gained entry into the country.
denaturalization- The procedure for taking away a person's citizenship, where it was obtained through naturalization.
deportability- Having a potential of being found to be ineligible to remain in the U.S.
inadmissibility- One of a number of bases for prohibiting a person from entering the U.S.
inspection- The procedure conducted by an INS officer at a port of entry to determine whether a person should be admitted to the U.S.
national origin discrimination- National origin discrimination occurs when an employer treats an employee differently because of the country the employee came from or because of the employee's ancestry.
notice to appear- A document issued by the immigration court directing the person to appear for a hearing at a specific time and location, to determine whether the person should be admitted or removed from the U.S. This document is referred to as an "NTA".
order to show cause- A word no longer in use for a document that requires a person to appear before an immigration judge to determine whether she should be removed from the country.
removal- The process or ejecting a person from the U.S. A removal order is entered at the conclusion of a removal hearing, where the person has been found to be either inadmissible or deportable.
removal hearing- A proceeding before an immigration judge to determine whether a person should be ejected from the U.S.
statelessness- The situation of having no citizenship or right to enter any country.
criminal deportation- The INS process of removing an alien from the United States to their country of origin for committing a criminal act which is considered deportable.
consul- An official of the U.S. Department of State overseas, who may issue travel documents to someone seeking permission to come to the U.S. The Consul is charged with the responsibility of interpreting and enforcing U.S. immigration laws outside of the U.S. The U.S. Consul also has duties relating to the protection of its citizens in a foreign country.
dual citizenship- Having citizenship in more than one country.
expatriation- The process of giving up one's citizenship. Under U.S. law, this can be done only by a U.S. citizen overseas before a U.S. Consul under oath, and the person must first establish that he is doing so voluntarily and that he has a legal status in another country. A person may not expatriate himself if it would render him stateless.
immigrant- A person who has a visa allowing her to be admitted to the U.S. permanently.
immigrant status- The legal status of someone with permission to immigrate to the U.S.
non-immigrant- A person seeking admission to the U.S. for a definite period of time and not as an immigrant.
political asylum - The term commonly used to refer to asylum status.
port of entry - An established or specifically designated location where a person may seek legal admission to the U.S. A port of entry may be at an airport, a sea port, or a land border crossing. All aliens are required to seek admission at a port of entry. �
refugee- A person outside his country or place of last residence who has established a well founded fear of persecution on account of political opinion, race, religion, nationality or membership in a particular social group. A refugee will not necessarily be allowed to come to the U.S. unless he fits into a designated category of persons who should be admitted. A refugee admitted to the U.S. may seek permanent resident status 1 year after admission.
suspension of deportation - An application which no longer exists under the immigration laws. It granted a person permanent residency because of the person's long standing residency and exceptional hardship which would result if he were required to leave. This immigration benefit is now referred to as "cancellation of removal".
permanent residence - The status of being authorized to remain in the U.S. permanently. A money judgment based on a civil wrong to an individual, such as an automobile accident. A portion of the personal injury award is exempt property that may be retained by a debtor who files bankruptcy.
For more information on immigration laws visit GotTrouble.com