Aug
18

Are Prostitution Stings by the Police “Entrapment?”

Wilson Law Group has posted about solicitation of prostitution issues in the past, but we are still seeing new clients come in whom the police have caught in backpage.com stings. Law enforcement uses that controversial website to lure unsuspecting “johns” to hotels in the metro area and records the entire interaction to ensure criminal prosecution. If you are caught soliciting prostitution at a hotel, which qualifies as a “public place” under Minnesota law, the State will charge you with a gross misdemeanor. The maximum sentence for a gross misdemeanor is one year in jail and/or a...

Aug
15

Obtaining a Passport for a Minor Child

When planning an international vacation, travelling parents should ensure that their U.S. citizen children have passports and be aware of the special requirements for minors under the age of 16.  There may be hurdles if the child’s parents are not married; renewing a passport can be an issue since passports for children under 16 are only valid for 5 years and the parents’ relationship may have changed since the issuance of the first passport so mutual consent (or even communication) is nonexistent.  To make it even more cumbersome, parents of minors under 16 must apply in person for...

Aug
1

Visa Interview Waiver Program Continues to Expand & Streamline Nonimmigrant Visa Process

The Interview Waiver Program (IWP) was first introduced in 2012 as a pilot program in an effort to promote travel and tourism to the United States for certain nonimmigrant applicants.  The IWP was made permanent this year in 2014.  The criteria for the IWP is published in the Foreign Affairs Manual, although it is important tocheck the consulate’s requirements because they can vary. 

Generally, all foreign nationals applying for a nonimmigrant visa (e.g. B-1/B-2, E, L, TN visa, etc.) must appear in person at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad for an interview by a consular officer. ...

Jul
28

Innocent Until Proven Guilty?

In the criminal justice system, everyone is innocent until proven guilty, right? That does not always appear to be the case. A recent DWI case involving an attorney who will likely be seeking election to our State's Supreme Court highlights this issue. Law enforcement stopped Michelle MacDonald for speeding in April 2013. The officer who stopped her initiated a DWI stop and asked her to perform field sobriety tests which she refused because she said she had not been drinking that night. MacDonald's refusal continued at the police station, where she refused to take a chemical test to...

Jul
28

Change in Minnesota’s Custody Law Effective August 1, 2014

Did you know that the Minnesota Legislature has clarified that there is no presumption regarding custody except in cases of domestic abuse? This is an important change in the law that will go into effect on August 1, 2014.  Minn. Stat. Sec. 518.17, subd. 2 has been amended to state, “There is no presumption for or against joint physical custody, except when domestic abuse, as defined in section 518B.01, has occurred between the parents.” 

So what does a judge consider when a child’s parents cannot agree on custody? Some fathers may discouragingly assume that a judge will always...

Jul
16

A Few Basic Employee Rights: Why You May Have Earned that Vacation, but Still Have No Right to One

Questions abound regarding the basic rights that people have as employees. This makes sense given how large of a role jobs play in most of our lives and the complexity and diverse of issues that affect employment. To further complicate matters, though the federal standards are the most commonly cited standards, they do not always apply. Sometimes employers are only responsible for meeting state, or even local, standards. To help clarify the matter for Minnesota employees, this post will address a few of the most common issues regarding basic employee rights.[1] First, though, it is useful...

Jul
14

Notario Fraud: Don’t Be a Victim!

Immigration law is extremely complex. It is important to have qualified representation because even a small mistake can have devastating consequences for you and your family.

Immigrant communities are particularly vulnerable to notario fraud. Notario fraud refers to people who offer legal advice, prepare immigration forms, or otherwise represent people before the immigration agencies when they are not qualified to do so. Generally, to practice immigration law, you must be a licensed attorney. A non-attorney who is specially authorized to represent immigrants by the Board of Immigration...

Jul
1

Breaking News Regarding USCIS Move

In addition to it not raining as much as was forecast for today, WLG has more good news! The USCIS office will not be moving to the outskirts of Bloomington near Eden Prairie!  Read all about it here.

Jun
16

Fact or Fiction: Can my U.S. Citizen Son or Daughter Apply for Me to Become a Permanent Resident?

Wilson Law Group is separating fact from fiction in a series of blogs clarifying some common misconceptions in immigration law.  We hope you find our clarifications helpful.  One common misconception is that a parent becomes automatically eligible for permanent residency once his/her child turns 21 and files a petition for the parent.  We wish it were that simple, but it is more complex.  To be clear, having a U.S. citizen son or daughter - even if s/he is 21 years old - does not automatically mean the parent is eligible for permanent residency in the U.S.  A parent certainly may be...

Jun
16

Hennepin and Ramsey Counties and ICE Holds

Hennepin and Ramsey County Sheriffs both announced this week that they are no longer going to honor Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) requests to hold non-citizens for 48-hours after they are released from criminal custody. Until this week, ICE would place a "hold" on certain non-citizen individuals when local law enforcement arrested them. The hold would give ICE 48 hours to come pick these individuals up after they were released from criminal custody. ICE would then often place them in removal proceedings. The Sheriffs cited cost as one of the main reasons they have decided to...

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