Deportation Disaster Averted

A minor criminal conviction threatened Dan with deportation- the consequence of that would have been dire for Dan and his family. Thanks to Aaron’s sound advice and support in his application, Dan was able to stay in the country.

Dan from Tauranga found himself in a very stressful situation when he received a deportation liability notice in the mail. Here on a partner visa, Dan had gotten a DUI and was facing a possible criminal conviction that would then nullify his visa. At the time, his wife, who came on a working visa in 2017, hadn’t yet completed the two-year residency requirement that would have protected him from deportation.

With a blood alcohol reading just over the legal limit, Dan would receive a six-month licence suspension and a fine. While the offence wasn’t serious enough to warrant jail time, even a minor criminal conviction can be all it takes to become unlawful and therefore deported.

 A mistake that almost tore the family apart

“It would have been devastating,” Dan says. “My wife’s got her family over here, and it would have pretty much meant that we split up: She stays here and I go back to South Africa, or she comes back to South Africa with me and is separated from her parents and her siblings.”

Given current COVID travel restrictions, it seemed unlikely that she would be able to visit them more than once in a while. Her parents, while still able-bodied, “definitely rely on her for quite a few things.” Feeling panicked by the prospect and out of his depth, Dan sought professional help.

“I started Googling good immigration lawyers that deal with this kind of thing and read a lot of reviews,” recalls Dan. Discovering NZIL’s site, he scanned several of the topical blog posts and was won over by Aaron’s sympathetic approach: “His view on immigration was what got me.”

A reassuring and compassionate advocate

Aaron talked Dan through the whole process over the phone: what actions he planned to take on Dan’s behalf, what the odds were, and all the possible outcomes. “He made it clear that this could go either way, because it’s still humans making the decision, but based on what I’d told him, he reckoned there was a good chance.”

After helping Dan complete a deportation liability questionnaire, Aaron was able to provide a workable strategy and a clear pathway with actionable steps. A checklist of items Dan would need to provide also helped him get super organised.

“Everything he explained to me was put in understandable terms, like he wasn’t throwing around legal jargon. And his demeanour really helped me calm down. He gave me really good reassurance and told me to just take it as it comes. I was losing a lot of sleep before speaking to him!”

Dan sums Aaron up as reassuring, clear, and compassionate: “Talking to him took a lot of the stress away. He has a very good presence and doesn’t judge you about anything that’s happened. I definitely think it would have gone south without his help.”

Have you recently received a deportation notice? The expert legal team at NZIL can offer sound advice and a definitive plan of action. But don’t delay – to build best possible case, contact us today.

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