Monthly Archives: September 2012

September 24, 2012

SeaWorld Orlando is the world’s largest marine-themed park, offering exhibits and live shows featuring dozens of species, from dolphins and manatees to the park’s signature “Shamu” orcas (more popularly known as killer whales).


Understanding your Visa, Passport and I-94 Card

It is a common for persons entering the United States on Visa to miscalculate the time allowable to stay in the United States before it is mandatory to return to their country of origin.

The most common example is a Visitor Visa. (B-2) In this case, a foreign national receives a new passport which has several years before it expires. The B-2 Visa is stamped in the Passport with an expiration date of (10) ten years. This means the person has (10) ten years in which to ENTER the United States. It does NOT mean the foreign national can stay in the United States for that length of time.

The I-94 Card determines the length of stay. This is a small card not more than 2” inches large, that is stapled into your passport. In some cases, there is no card and only the words handwritten or stamped “I-94” with a date. This date is the expiration date or the last day a person is legally permitted to be in the United States. The (10) ten-year visa usually has an I-94 Card that expires in (6) six months.

If a person stays past this I-94 date, they are considered “out of status” and are in the United States illegally. Any time period in illegal status can bar reentry for a person at later date.   This Bar to reentry can be from 1-10 years in duration.



September 17, 2012

Orlando will always be known for Disney World. However, it is home of the 2nd largest university in the United States. The University of Central Florida, commonly referred to as UCF, is a metropolitan public research university. UCF is a member institution of the State University System of Florida, and is the second-largest university in the United States by enrollment with more than 60,000 Students. 

Political Asylum: 

Which is the better option?   Immigration Court vs. Asylum Officer 

Immigration Court

In Immigration Court, you are already out of status so you must win your case or the result will most likely be Voluntary Departure or Deportation. However, you have the advantage of a full hearing and to advance as much evidence as possible at trial. If the case is lost, it can be appealed to the Board of Immigration Appeals in Falls Church Virginia. The last appeal would be to the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, in Atlanta Georgia. 

Asylum Officer 

In this scenario, you are in status such as being a student on an F-1 student Visa. The Applicant requests a hearing by completing an I-589 form with written documentation. If you are in the State of Florida, the only place to be interviewed is Miami, Florida. The Officer will interview you with an attorney present and you are permitted live witnesses. The interview can last from 1-4 hours. 

The officer will send the decision in the mail. If it is unfavorable, you have (16) sixteen days to respond to meet the criteria in the letter. If the officer still concludes that political asylum should not be granted, the case is over. The applicant has NO APPEAL RIGHTS.  Although the decision may be unfavorable, your current status is no lost and thus will not be deported.


What information will the officer have regarding your Visa?

Every document filed with the USCIS.

Most importantly written answers to questions asked at the Consulate in the foreign country

The attorney representing you does not have the information submitted to the consulate when you are interviewed at the USCIS.

At the interview, the officer will be asking the foreign national questions and comparing that information to his/her computer screen.

Any statement that conflicts with what the officer is reading on the computer will be examined closely.

A seemingly innocent misstatement made to the Consulate abroad can be deemed VISA FRAUD and grounds to be placed in deportation proceedings.

The moral of the story is there are no secrets with the USCIS and probably the worst mistake is to tell a lie.

The Tripodi Law Firm, P.A.

We are pleased to announce the opening of our Orlando office. This office along with our Sarasota and Tampa offices will allow for complete coverage of the “I-4 Corridor” which best represents a cross section of Florida and the country as a whole.

Orlando has become one of the few international cities in the United States with nationalities from around the Globe and thus a need for diverse immigration services.

The Firm was created and staffed with seasoned professionals that are all descendants of Immigrants. Thus, each case receives personal attention that is necessitated by immigration matters. This team is composed of Attorneys, Paralegals and other personnel  speaking both English and Spanish along with interpreters of Arabic  German, Italian, Mandarin, Vietnamese available at a moment’s notice.

John J. Tripodi, Attorney at Law – was trained in the spirit of the famed “Philadelphia Lawyer” Alexander Hamilton at one of the Nation’s largest law firms in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This opportunity allowed Attorney Tripodi to represent some of the United States largest Companies in highly complex billion dollar transactions. He was licensed by bar examination in the States of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Therefore, John can practice on States Issues in these jurisdictions but has no geographical limit with respect to Immigration cases and take action in all 50 States.  

Robert A. Flynn, Attorney at Law – completed his undergraduate studies at the prestigious school of University of California at Berkeley. He went to work as Criminal lawyer but soon included immigration matters. Mr. Flynn has tried more than (100) one-hundred cases in front of a Jury. Mr. Flynn’s international experiences allow him to be skilled in the translation of Spanish vocabularies. He has also performed services as a consultant and as federal translator concerning specialized legal documents. Robert is licensed to practice law in Florida, Colorado, Georgia, Michigan and Texas.

Gary P. Benjamin – Operations Manager

Mr. Benjamin served the United States in many foreign lands and specialized in electronics. Gary received (3) three Army Commendations Medals. Mr. Benjamin has formed more than (17) seventeen successful businesses over the course of twenty years.

With Mr. Gary’s wealth of experience in the business environment and his extensiveworldwide traveling, he is an invaluable asset to the operation of our law firm and our Business Immigration Clients.