If you are picked up by ICE

As you know, ICE has been very active in conducting raids across the nation and in particular California.  There are certain things that you should know so that if you encounter ICE you don’t put yourself in a worse position.

First, ICE cannot enter your home without a Judicial warrant.  However, if you are on probation, a probation officer can accompany ICE and the probation officer will be able to enter your home.  If ICE takes you from your home or from the streets, do not resist and do not present any false information or false documents.

After being arrested you will be taken to the basement (B-18) of 300 North Los Angeles (if in the Los Angeles area).  There they will determine what to do with you.  If you don’t have criminal history or history with immigration, they can release you on OR or set bail.  There are several factors they consider in determining what to do with you.  1. Your criminal history, 2. Immigration History, 3. Time in the United States, 4. Family ties in the U.S., 5 If you have any forms of relief or ways to fix your status.

If you have prior deportations or history with immigration, you could be subject to expedited removal and won’t have an opportunity to see a judge.  If you are a Mexican National and have been previously deported or ordered removed, you can be processed and taken across the border within hours.  If you do have a deportation or removal order, consult with an attorney and see if there is something you can do.  If you are a national from another country other than Mexico, then you will have a little time to reopen your case.  But most likely if you have any immigration history or deportations, you are likely to be taken to a detention facility until you are removed from the United States.

If you have criminal history, depending on the severity, ICE will determine whether to release you on OR or send you to a detention center.  Now days, a DUI is sufficient enough to detain you.  However, you will have an opportunity to have an immigration judge review your detention at a bond hearing several weeks after arriving at the detention center.

The persons taken to B-18 at 300 N. Los Angeles St. are not held there more than 24 hours.  Usually they are picked up early in the morning and taken there to be processed and then either released, given bond, removed to Mexico or bussed to a detention facility.   Families can visit at 1pm and sometimes they are instructed to bring clothing in case of removal. An attorney can in some cases appear and talk to the officers that morning and sometimes can present facts that may assist in a more positive decision.

There are several things that you can do and have prepared which may avoid you spending unnecessary time in the detention facility.

First, if you have a US citizen wife and child and can fix your status through them, then you should start the process and at the very least keep copies of the information like marriage certificate, birth certificate so that you can show the ICE officers that you have a way of fixing your status.  If you have an application in the process, then keep a copy of the receipt with you.

If you have a way of getting status in the US and have an old removal order, then start the process to clean that up.

If you have existing warrants or old criminal convictions, talk to an attorney and see what can be done to clean it up so it doesn’t become a factor or a reason to take you into custody.

There are many cases that if the proper steps are taken, one can avoid the unnecessary detention which can be traumatic on family members, financially devastating and a very unpleasant experience.

If you have concerns, reach out and speak to an attorney about your options.