We get a lot of frequent inquiries about this topic; what should I do if my relative has been taken by ICE? Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the agency responsible for enforcing immigration laws and detaining and deporting immigrants. The first thing to do is to not panic. It is important to understand what it means to be detained and in ICE custody, as well as what steps you and your family can take to potentially locate the detainee and help get them out of the detention center.
There are many reasons why ICE detains immigrants. These can include crimes, an outstanding order of removal, or missed immigration court hearing dates, to name a few. The agency can also detain someone who arrives at the U.S. border or Port of Entry without proper documentation or someone who is deemed to be a safety concern or flight risk.
If you recently discovered that a family member has been detained by ICE, please ensure you take the necessary steps below to help the detainee.
1. Contact an Immigration Attorney
Speaking with an experienced U.S. immigration lawyer is the first step you should take and can make a huge difference. A lawyer can walk you through the steps to ensure your loved one is receiving proper and fair treatment while detained, as well as explain the law and possible outcomes with you. Our immigration attorneys in Los Angeles have successfully helped many individuals get released from ICE custody.
2. Contact the Deportation Officer
If your family member is being held in an ICE detention facility, he or she will be assigned a deportation officer. When contacting the deportation officer, you should expect to answer questions regarding your relationship with the detainee. You should be able to find the detention center information online and the deportation officer should be able to tell you about visiting and calling the detainee.
3. Motion for a bond hearing
After your immigration attorney has contacted the deportation officer, he will make a motion for a bond hearing. The bond hearing determines whether a detainee can be released from the detention facility or not, and provided with another court date. Every person detained by ICE has the right to a bond hearing. If an Immigration Judge finds that the detainee can be released then a bond amount will be set. Once this bond amount is paid then the detainee can be released.
Let us help your loved one get out of ICE custody! Serving the Los Angeles area, our immigration attorneys can also practice law across the entire country, so regardless of where your loved one is being held, contact us now! We offer a FREE consultation and affordable rates.