Archive for June, 2011

What if he was a foreigner?

Sunday, June 12th, 2011

Plaxico Burress

Plaxico Burress, a former New York Giants and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver was convicted of attempted possession of a firearm and reckless endangerment on August 20, 2009, in New York City. A firearms offense is a deportable offense. INA § 237(a)(2)(C).  The statute includes attempts to possess a firearm. A permanent resident is able to seek forgiveness for a firearms offense pursuant to INA § 240A(a) if he has accrued five years of permanent residence and seven years of residence after an admission. In a legal curiosity, firearms offenses are not grounds of inadmissibility, so Mr. Burress could also seek relief through becoming a permanent resident, even if he already was one. To do this he would need to be petitioned by a United States citizen spouse or an adult (over age 21) son or daughter. He apparently has a United States citizen spouse. An immigration judge would have to weigh the positive and negative equities in Mr. Burress’s life in deciding to forgive him or re-adjust his status. Posted May 12, 2011.

A Sarah Palin-inspired naturalization examination answer key

Friday, June 10th, 2011

Last week we all learned something – a unique historical interpretation of Paul Revere’s ride by Sarah Palin. She later had the opportunity to explain how her version of history was correct. Convinced, people then went onto Wikipedia to change the entry for Paul Revere to reflect Sarah Palin’s version of history as the correct version. Steven Colbert demonstrated the technical feasibility of her version of history. It was certainly reassuring that Americans are able to re-evaluate their history and not simply accept establishment dogma as “truth.”

This got me thinking about testing basic American civics concepts. To naturalize, i.e., to become a U.S. citizen, applicants must take a test of U.S. Civics. It is not very hard, but there are right and wrong answers, which seems somewhat unfair, as historical and civics facts, as we see from Sarah Palin, are open to interpretation and modification. Further, it has been pointed out that the “true” answers are not always right, which is all the more a reason to challenge Big Government’s view of history and civics. (more…)

Fee arbitration a remedy if your lawyer cheated you.

Sunday, June 5th, 2011

Today’s blog addresses an issue that arises all to often in the attorney-client interaction realm – fee disputes. Like love, how many ways do fee disputes arise? – to the depth and breadth and height an imagination can conjure.

Fee disputes go in two directions – attorneys not being paid by clients for work done and clients paying and there being dissatisfaction with the work product. At the outset, let me disclose that I volunteer as a fee arbitrator for the San Diego County Bar and so have some experience with the process. (more…)