U.S. Legal Issues
Even as a temporary visitor, you are expected to know and obey the laws of the United States, of New York State, of Monroe County, of the City of Rochester and of any of the surrounding towns you live in or visit. If you break any of these laws and are caught and charged by the authorities, claiming ignorance because of your visitor status will not excuse the charges or reduce the applicable penalty or fine. Normally, minor offenses such as disturbing the peace or drunkenness (or even lesser violations such as traffic or parking tickets) will not affect your immigration status; however, if you are convicted of a crime of "moral turpitude" or one for which the penalty could even potentially involve one year or more of confinement, you could be deported. Charges relating to the possession and sale of illegal drugs, driving a car while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and committing fraud are a few examples of crime that fall into this category.
Common Legal Concerns
While the following is not a complete list, some of the areas in which international visitors have encountered legal problems include: vehicle and traffic laws, alcohol and drug laws, domestic violence, child neglect and child abuse, sexual assault and sexual harassment. There are many resources, both inside and outside the University, to assist you in your responsibility to understand and obey the law. Links to some of these are included below:
- University Health Service / University Counseling Center
- University Policies & Regulations:
- Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy
- Policy Against Discrimination and Harassment
- Standards of Student Conduct
- Graduate Studies Bulletin
- University Intercessors
- Dean of Students Office
- New York State Department of Motor Vehicles
- Monroe County Child and Family Services
While the ISO is an important resource regarding immigration regulations and other laws and rules affecting your status in the United States, we cannot serve as your attorney or provide legal advice. However, we can consult with you about any problems or concerns you are having and, when appropriate, help you find a qualified attorney to assist you further.
Scams & Fraud
Occasionally, the ISO learns about scams that are targeting international students and scholars. When available, details and guidance will be posted to our Scams & Frauds page.