Immigration law is complex and applies differently depending on your individual situation. It is always important to consult with an experienced immigration attorney regarding your individual legal circumstances. The immigration information in this page is not to be construed as immigration advice. The immigration information is provided as a resource, especially for undocumented students, for navigating the complicated web that is immigration.
Constitutional Protections: The United States constitution carries certain basic protections for all persons regardless of their immigration status. Some of these basic protections include:
- Protections against unreasonable search and seizure
- Right to attorney in criminal trials/confront accuser
- Freedom of religion and association/expression
What if I am stopped by immigration?
- Remain silent
- Do not show any type of document (except for valid ID or Driver’s License)
- Do not sign anything
- Do not give false information about your identity
- Do not discuss where you were born
- Ask officer if you are free to go /only not free to go if you are under arrest
- Do not carry false documents on your person
What if immigration comes to my home?
- Do not open the door without a search warrant
- Immigration Officials must have a search warrant in order to enter your home
- Do not show the officer any document except for your valid state-issued ID or driver’s license
- Do not sign anything
- Do not lie to officers or answer questions about where you were born
What to do if immigration comes to my place of work?
- Remain calm
- Don’t run
- Leave calmly
- Call an immigration attorney if detained
Danger! Notarios / Document Prepares:
- Do not use “notarios” or document preparers for legal advice
- Only certain qualified individuals or attorneys can provide legal advice – this is especially important in immigration law
- Seek attorneys with a lot of immigration experience – when looking for an attorney, make sure to ask how many years they have been practicing law
- Protect yourself! State Bars: Each state has a state bar association (ex: wsba.org for Washington/calbar.ca.gov for California) – these associations regulate who is admitted to practice law in your state. Log on to your state bar’s website to make sure the attorney you are hiring is in fact eligible to practice law.
2013 IMMIGRATION REFORM – From National Immigration Law Center