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  • N-400 and moving violation

    How do I fill out my N-400 after getting a traffic ticket at the roadside which I paid by mail?

    Do I say "yes" to "Have you EVER committed a crime or offense for which you were NOT arrested?"

    Was I detained, so that I need to send in the conviction record from the court?

    My M-477 must be old because it refers to qus. 1-15 in part 7 and qus. 1-5 in part 8, which makes no sense on the current N-400. Anybody know which questions it's really talking about?

    Thanks!

    -- Mark

  • #2
    How do I fill out my N-400 after getting a traffic ticket at the roadside which I paid by mail?

    Do I say "yes" to "Have you EVER committed a crime or offense for which you were NOT arrested?"

    Was I detained, so that I need to send in the conviction record from the court?

    My M-477 must be old because it refers to qus. 1-15 in part 7 and qus. 1-5 in part 8, which makes no sense on the current N-400. Anybody know which questions it's really talking about?

    Thanks!

    -- Mark

    Comment


    • #3
      Markc!

      A traffic violation is not a criminal offense and so you do not have to report it as such.

      If you look carefully at the N-400 form/instuctions, it is said therein that the applicant should list all arrests, charges, indictments and/or convictions either in the US or elsewhere, excluding traffic and parking violations.

      So you don't have a problem if all you are guilty of is a traffic offense. However, if you failed to pay the ticket you were given after the traffic violation. This could be considered as displaying a lack of Good Moral Character!

      Hence your N-400 application might be denied. I hope this helps. Good Luck!

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks! Unfortunately, if you look at the new N-400s, you will see that they no longer say that you don't have to mention traffic violations. ):

        Comment


        • #5
          Whether or not the new N-400 states it, traffic violations are not criminal offenses, nor are they an arrest. Again, a good argument for hiring competent legal counsel before you make any more dumb mistakes in the naturalization process.

          Comment


          • #6
            It says, "crime *or* offense", not "criminal offense", and many states regard moving violations as some sort of offense - even "noncriminal", which often means that the only punishment is a fine. For instance, this was failure to control, in Ohio, which even the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles list online as being an offense (conviction code 91). I hope this helps you see why I'm being careful here and asking around.

            "any more dumb mistakes"? What was the first? I haven't filled in part 10(D) of the N-400 in yet - I figured it was smart to stop for advice first, and will consult a lawyer if I have to.

            Comment


            • #7
              My wife has filled out the form N-400 and under "Good Moral Character" item #16 "have you ever been arrested?" checked no.

              She was notified that a fingerprint check revealed that indeed she had.

              About 10 years ago, she was arrested for an outstanding traffic ticket on one occasion and a minor shop lifting charge on another.

              The outstanding traffic ticket arrrest resulted in her spending a night in detension and was released the following morning. The shop lifting arrest resulted in a $200. fine which was paid.

              Since both incidents were resolved, she assumed that she had no record.

              She was instructed to bring the resolution paperwork to the next interview but we are unable to locate any records since most agencies only retain records for 7 years. We have tried computer type searchs with no success.

              Do you have any suggestions? Thank you for your response.

              Comment


              • #8
                I really wish I could help you! For the traffic offense, I'm guessing your local authorities don't list the event on her driving record because it's too old? If it's just a case of agencies not bothering to look, rather than them being certain they don't have anything, I suppose you might be able to file a Freedom of Information Act request - http://www.missouri.edu/~foiwww/citelist.html has some good links to those. If you can, then I'd start with whoever still had her fingerprints on file.

                It does raise the more general question of what to do when the INS require something that you simply can't provide. Hell, even what I wrote about how many days over the past five years I've spent outside the US, and other stuff like that, was guesswork - the records just don't exist. Can you at least get an official letter that confirms that the resolution paperwork no longer exists? (I hope it's at least clear which agency should have it if anyone does.) The written response to FOIA requests might suffice there - even if you go in with a bundle of official replies (FOIA or not) to your letters requesting such stuff, that has to count for something, I'd hope.

                Comment

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