An alien in the United States faces deportation when they violate criminal or immigration laws. When a person is deported, they may lose their right to return to the country in the future. Deportation is a legal process that involves several steps.
- The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement issues a Notice to Appear (NTA). The notice is served to the person and filed with immigration court. The NTA lists the personal information of the alien along with the reason for the proposed deportation.
- A hearing in front of an immigration judge is scheduled. The hearing is postponed if the person needs time to secure legal representation.
- At the hearing, the judge will ask the alien to verify information contained in the notice.
- The alien is granted the opportunity to apply for any applicable form of relief from deportation.
- An individual hearing may be held at which the alien can testify and call witnesses.
- If deportation is ordered, the alien has 30 days to file an appeal. If deportation is not ordered at the individual hearing, the immigration service has the opportunity to appeal the decision.
Any person in Washington state who is facing deportation from the United States should consult an experienced attorney for assistance. An immigration attorney will meet with the person facing deportation and review the facts of the case to determine the best course of action for that unique situation. A person may have the legal right to remain in the country and should not assume that a deportation order means they will be forced to leave the United States.