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Being arrested by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or placed in removal proceedings by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) can be intimidating for you and your family members. Removal proceedings determine whether an immigrant will be removed or deported from the United States. There are several types of reliefs that may be available to you, if you are placed in removal proceedings. If you are placed in removal proceedings and you would like to know whether you can apply for immigration relief, you will find the following information helpful:
Before the alien is placed in deportation proceedings, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) must serve the alien with a charging document, called a Notice to Appear (NTA). The alien in removal/deportation proceedings is called the “respondent.” NTA orders the respondent to appear before an immigration judge and provides notice of the removal proceedings, the alleged immigration law violations, the ability to seek available free legal attorneys, and the consequences of failing to appear at scheduled hearings.
DHS must file the NTA with an immigration court having jurisdiction over the respondent’s location. There are currently 29 immigration courts located in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington. Each immigration court handles cases for its geographical area, which sometimes encompasses several states.
When the immigration court receives the NTA from DHS, the court schedules a master hearing with an immigration judge. Typically, there are two hearings: a master hearing and an individual hearing. But there may be more than one hearing, depending on your situation.
It is important to get in touch with a good immigration lawyer in the United States as early as possible to avoid potential problems and to plan the best immigration strategy for you and your family. Attorneys at I.S. Law Firm have provided immigration help to many immigrants and their families. To learn more about our services and for consultation, please contact us at +1-703-527-1779 or via e-mail: [email protected].