Travelling to US with a criminal record in the UK

Travel Forums North America Travelling to US with a criminal record in the UK

1641. Posted by JoeGabs (Budding Member 2 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hello everyone!

Come to you all today with a question that probably doesn't fall into the regular "I have a conviction, can I go on holiday to the US" category. So was wanting some advice if anyone has any.

I'll start by stating I have a criminal record for the following from 3 years ago now;
- Importation of Class C
- Intent to supply A / B / C
(none of this was large amounts - 10-20grams, even though this probably won't matter in the eyes of an immigration officer)

The above resulted in a 1 year sentence, suspended for 2 years. (so no jail time served) I did have to do community service though.

Since then I have travelled the world and been absolutely fine in getting into what some may consider the 'harder' countries to go to (Australia, New Zealand and Canada) albeit I DID NOT declare my criminal record.

Whilst being away... I've gone and got myself a girlfriend from the USA. (just my luck I choose a girl from a country that doesn't take kindly to my past record :( )

I obviously want to go and see her and travel to the USA. Now, firstly let me just say this. I'm not worried about going there for just a holiday, as I know I would be fine (as I just wouldn't declare my record)

It is pretty serious between me and her. I'd say its at the stage where, we've discussed moving in together and settling down. Obviously I am extremely concerned about never being able to live in the USA.

OK, so here are my question(s)....

1. If I was wanting to move to the USA, would there be any leverage if I was married / had children with her?

2. I've heard about spouse visa's? Again, would this have any effect?

3. An out and out move to try and immigrate on my own behalf to the USA, presume this is right out of the question?!

3. Finally a question regarding entering for just a holiday via the ESTA programme to see her. If I was to go on holiday and 'lied' on my application, obviously by declaring "No" to the section of your Criminal History, would this have detrimental effects when/if I wanted to apply to be a resident or if I was married to her say 4 or 5 years down the line? Or would it be neither here nor there?

As you can see I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place here. I feel very harsh on her by having to ask her to move to England for a few years until my record is more in the past so to speak! Even though she has happily talked about moving here to England. I obviously want it to work both ways, and whether that means we settle in England or the USA (dependent on me) it would be nice to know we could both migrate to each others country if possible.

Anyways apologies in the long post or if I've already repeated an answered question. Read a lot of your posts Terry! Think I'm holding out for a bit of a hero here aren't I!!

Cheers everyone,


1642. Posted by JoeGabs (Budding Member 2 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Forgot to add that I am a U.K citizen.



1643. Posted by tommybhoy (Budding Member 2 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hi there, just an update, I posted a while ago worried as I had multiple previous convictions in the uk for offences ranging from driving while over the limit to assault, i ticked no to all the questions on the esta and got into the us no problem, firstly to new york then los angeles, going away again in a few weeks to vegas and the esta i previously applied for is still valid as it lasts for 2 years so heres hoping i get in again. In my opinion if you have a criminal record and you are going for less than 90 days just go the esta route and say no to criminal history and it should be ok, however nothing is gauranteed but if you have a criminal history chances are if you apply for the visa or declare them then you will not get in, best of luck to you all.

1644. Posted by CheersT (Inactive 2578 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Bullseye, Tommy.


1645. Posted by Paul847673 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Hi there

I am a U.K. Passport holder I have a conviction for obtaining goods by deception 10 years ago where I received a fine and 100 hours community service. As it is a crime of moral turpitude for peace of mind I am planning to apply for a visa rather than lie on the esta.

My question is around the timing of when to set the application in motion as we are thinking about traveling in May 2019. I believe that due to the crime and length of time since the conviction I will go down the visa of ineligibility and by reading this thread it might just be valid for a year. If I apply now and get a 1 year visa but don't travel to the US in the next year will it affect my chances of getting another visa?

Any advice appreciated!

1646. Posted by GavinL (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

So nervous my esta might get revoked

Post 1647 was removed by a moderator
1648. Posted by GavinL (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Lloyd, apparently they do checks on you before you even leave the country, is that something you're aware of?

1649. Posted by Peter (Admin 6661 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Sorry, lloyd was a spammer. I had to remove that post as it was a copy of an earlier post in this thread.

1650. Posted by GavinL (Budding Member 4 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

What an ass haha downstairs help my situation then