Common Immigration Rights You Need To Know

Immigration to The United States of America can be a tricky process. It can be one of the essential steps for you, your work, and your family. Hence, it’s best if the process goes over smoothly without a hitch.

You may feel overwhelmed by the bureaucracy in such a condition, but you should know that you have certain rights irrespective of your immigration status. You must understand them so that you see the morality of anything that may occur during the process. Here are some things that you need to know right away.

Have you been asked questions about your status by law enforcement before?

It is expected that law enforcement officers can ask you several questions about your immigration status and such encounters tend to get a little heated. If you find yourself in an incident like this, the first thing you need to do is keep a cool head.

You have no reason to panic or get rude. If you get violent or raise your voice, all you’ll do is increase the hostility in the environment. In case the officer shows intent to arrest you or try to violate any rights, try to comply with the officer and stay quiet for the time being.

Keep your hands where the officer can see them, and in this situation, answer all their questions honestly. Or at least avoid lying or showing fake documents at all costs. Save the talking till you’re sitting in front of your legal representation.

Call an immigrant rights attorney as soon as you can in these cases. They can be of tremendous help in ensuring that you’re treated with due respect through the process. They will also be competent enough to argue for your case in court and get you the best outcome possible.

Your rights in case of an arrest

Here are some fundamental rights you should know in case of an arrest -

  • In case the officer is racist or insulting, you have full liberty to stay quiet and request a lawyer to mediate between you and the authorities. It is perfectly legal for you to avoid discussing your immigration status with an official. Be careful because your statements can be used against you in court.
  • In case you do have your papers, you should show them immediately. In case you do not have your documents, tell the officer that you wish to remain silent in the absence of your lawyer. Consulting a lawyer before answering any of their questions is critical.
  • Whether you have your documents or not, you have the right to say no to being searched. Any agent or officer does not have the right to search you or your belongings without your consent or probable cause.
  • If the police arrest you, you have the right to a government-appointed lawyer. However, if the ICE detains you, you can still consult with a lawyer but at your dollar. In cases of being detained, the government is not required to give you an attorney.
  • You also have a right to refrain from answering specific questions. You have no obligation to answer questions about your birthplace, your citizenship status, or how you entered the country.