Serving the mid-Atlantic area:
Virginia, Maryland, Washington D.C., Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia and Delaware

Detentions at the United States Border

Immigrants who are arrested by immigration officials at the US Border are categorized as “arriving aliens”.  Many arriving aliens are turned away and not permitted to enter the U.S. Those who are not turned away are not eligible to receive a bail bond before an immigration judge, but they may be paroled in. 

If you are categorized as an “arriving alien” and you have a fear of harm or you fear persecution from your home country,  you should express this fear to a deportation officer by requesting a “credible fear” interview at the time you are detained at the border.

You will be taken into detention, and an asylum officer will interview you. If immigration officials make a finding that you have a credible fear of persecution, you will be placed into removal proceedings where an immigration judge will decide if you are eligible to remain in the U.S.

Some individuals who are arrested at the border may have a prior order of deportation.  In these circumstances the US Border officials may deport that person immediately.  However, the immigrant does have a right to request a “reasonable fear” interview. If they succeed in passing a reasonable fear interview they may be permitted to file an application for relief based on fear, but they will have to proceed with this application while remaining in the custody of immigration.

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