Common Immigration Mistake: Not Knowing Your Record

Know Your Record

Hello, my name is Hana Boston and I’m an immigration attorney at

Today I’m going to talk about one common mistake many people make when preparing their immigration application — not knowing your criminal record.

When the USCIS is reviewing your immigration application, they check your criminal record. You should be aware of all crimes you committed — from traffic violations to drug offenses.

Even minor crimes can affect whether or not your immigration application is approved. That’s why it’s important to know what’s on your record before you file.

You can easily request a copy of your criminal record from the FBI before you apply. All you need is a set of your fingerprints, the $18 application fee and the FBI form. You can get your fingerprints taken at your local police station or check for private companies in your area that provide this service. Visit to get an application. It takes about 30 days to process.

If you do have a criminal record, it’s always a good idea to have it reviewed by an immigration attorney. They can advise you on how best to answer questions on the immigration application and what to do if the USCIS asks more questions about your crimes.

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