What If ICE Detains Your Relative?

When a relative is detained by the Department of Homeland Security, or DHS, knowing what to do to help him or her can be difficult. However, it is important that you take action to possibly prevent deportation. If you suspect that a relative has been detained, here are some steps you need to take immediately.  

Verify Your Relative's Detention

Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, and DHS more than likely will not notify the family that someone has been detained. However, your relative should be allowed a phone call after being taken into custody. If you have not heard from your relative, you can verify that he or she is in custody and determine where he or she is being detained.  

The easiest way to find out your loved one's whereabouts is to visit the ICE website and use the detainee locator tool. You will need to provide information, such as your relative's name and country of birth, to learn information about him or her.  

It is important to note that not all detainees end up in ICE detention centers. It is possible that your relative is being held at a local jail. If that is the case, you could be forced to call around to discover his or her whereabouts. Start locally and expand your search from there. You should also contact correctional facilities in the area. 

Request an Immigration Bond

Depending on the circumstances of your relative's case, he or she might be eligible for an immigration bond. The bond is similar to that in a criminal court. It will allow your relative to be released from detention and allowed to go home until his or her hearing regarding deportation.  

You can contact the detention facility where your loved one is housed to determine what the bond is. In some instances, bond is not allowed. If you are informed that there is no bond, find out if that is because your relative is being denied one or if the judge has not set one yet.  

If the bond that was set is unaffordable, your relative's immigration attorney can request a bond hearing. During the hearing, the case for lowering the bond can be made. For instance, the attorney can argue that your loved one does not have a criminal record and has ties in the community that would prevent him or her from not following the conditions of the bond.  

If you do not have an attorney for your relative, now is the time to get one. Working quickly with an attorney could possibly prevent deportation. Contact a law firm like Fickey Martinez Law Firm, P.L.L.C. to learn more.