Safe Havens: How to Identify and Construct Non-Deportable Convictions

By: Norton Tooby and JJ Rollin

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This book outlines a procedure – and provides resources – to aid both criminal and immigration counsel in identifying and constructing safe haven dispositions in criminal cases that will not trigger deportability.  This is useful (a) when counsel are faced with criminal charges before plea, and are seeking a safe haven; (b) when a criminal conviction has come into existence, and immigration counsel are attempting to discern whether it will trigger deportation; and (c) when post-conviction counsel are seeking to learn (1) whether a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel exists because original counsel missed an available safe haven, or (2) what safe havens might be available when the damaging conviction has been vacated and the original charges reinstated.


Safe Havens is also a fertile source of good news, suggesting many safe haven arguments that a given conviction does not trigger one ground of deportation, or any ground of deportation.  Counsel can easily locate applicable cases and arguments, since they are organized by topic, type of case, and ground of deportation, as well as through a table of authorities and subject-matter index.  These arguments can be raised before the Immigration Judge, on appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals, circuit court of appeals, or in district court on habeas corpus.  This book is indispensable for immigration and criminal defense lawyers representing noncitizens facing possible deportation on the basis of a criminal conviction.



  • 2005 edition, with continuous free update service

  • 1050 pages

  • Over 160 judicial decisions holding a conviction does not constitute a crime of moral turpitude, and a similar number holding an offense is not an aggravated felony

  • A source of good news, suggesting many safe haven arguments that a given conviction does not trigger any ground of deportation

  • Easily locate applicable cases and arguments, organized by topic, type of case, and ground of deportation




“You are a resource that immigration attorneys need all the time. With the way ICE is acting I can’t live without your resource materials.”


- Lourdes Rodriguez-De Jongh, Attorney at Law, Tucson, AZ


“The book covers not only substantive legal issues but also provides practical guidance on procedural issues that can trip up even the most conscientious lawyer.”


-Manny Vargas, NYSDA Immigrant Defense Project, NY


"This is a must for criminal defense attorneys!"


- Karen Hill, SF, CA



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