Everyone has heard the horror stories about families separated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It can be a scary thought, and you might not be sure exactly what to do to protect yourself from that.
The first thing you should do is to stay calm. Even if you get detained during an immigration arrest, you shouldn’t be forced out of the country right away. There’s a process to go through before that happens.
If you are detained and asked to leave the country, you most likely will get to see your family again before you have to go. You will have time to make plans for what to do if that happens. In most cases, this is the worst thing that will happen.
But, understandably, you might still be concerned. That’s why this article will guide you through what to do if you or a loved one are detained by ICE so that you’re prepared for whatever happens.
Be Prepared For An Immigration Arrest
If you feel that you’re at risk of ICE detaining you, then it’s best to have a plan in place. Make sure you know who you’re going to call before you get detained. This could be a loved one who knows the plan or a lawyer.
Make sure you know where ICE tends to pick people up. Usually, they do this during workplace raids, but they may also come to your house. It is also becoming more common for ICE to approach people on the streets.
Keep an eye out for new unmarked vehicles around your house. Sometimes ICE uses white vans for stalking people to learn their daily routines before making an arrest.
ICE may use certain tactics to get inside your home without a signed warrant. They may say that they’re looking for someone else or that they’re with the police. In most cases, this is completely legal, but you don’t need to let them inside your home because of that.
If they do not have a warrant, then ask them to come back with one. Otherwise, don’t let them inside your home. You shouldn’t lie to officers, but you shouldn’t answer questions without a lawyer present either.
You may also be detained during routine traffic stops. If this happens, don’t answer any questions about immigration status. ICE may ask to interview you when your information is entered into the system, and that is when you will be placed in their custody.
Know Your Rights
Once you are actively in immigration detention, you should be aware that you have rights according to the United States Government. Make sure to exercise these rights as quickly as possible once you’ve been detained.
The main two rights that you have to remember are the right to remain silent and the right to legal representation. You get the option of these two rights under United States immigration laws. However, a lawyer will not automatically be provided for you.
The first thing you should do once you are in custody is to announce that you wish to have an immigration lawyer present. Then announce your intention to use your right to remain silent. After this, answer no questions beyond confirming your intentions.
Again, do not lie to any ICE or police officers. They can use this against you later in immigration court. However, you should be aware that your right to remain silent means that you do not have to answer any question asked by an officer.
Your lawyer will know what questions to answer and not answer once they arrive. Ideally, you will have met with your chosen lawyer beforehand at least once to discuss a plan for if you are detained. If you haven’t done this, then be sure to ask for identification before speaking to anyone.
Remember that if you answer any questions before your court date, the court will assume that you waived your right to remain silent. This is why it is so important to only speak to your lawyer.
Get a Bond
Once you have a lawyer and a court date, the next thing you need to do is get yourself out of immigration detention. Usually, you will have some type of bail that lets you leave until your court date. That’s why your next step should be to get a bail bond.
There are three different types of bonds that you might be looking at for immigration court. Each type should get paid back once you meet certain requirements.
The first is a simple delivery bond. This is commonly used for those who also have other criminal charges against them. It’s meant to ensure that you actually arrive at court so that you can get your money back.
The second is a voluntary departure bond. This comes with an agreement that you will leave the country on your own once you’re released. You will get your money back when it’s confirmed that you’re no longer in the United States.
The third type of bond is an order of supervision bond. This does not require you to leave the country. Anyone who has this may live and work in the United States until their court date.
However, if you have an order of supervision bond, then you must follow certain rules that ICE will give you. You may have an ankle monitor put on you. There may be certain places that you’re not allowed to go to, like bars.
Your goal now is to be able to leave and be with your family until your court date. This is the final step towards making that happen.
Get Bonded Today
If you or a loved one are the victims of an immigration arrest, then don’t wait. Make sure you have a plan in place to walk out of the detention center freely.
You need a reliable bail bonds team to help you with this. That’s why you should trust Amistad Bail and Immigration Bonds. We’re here to help you get back to your family, and we serve bonds for immigration courts nationwide.
Find an agent today and see how we can help you get back to your family.