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What are deportation and removal proceedings?

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2014 | Criminal Defense

There is a relatively large group of immigrants in California, many of whom have constant fears about the possibility of being deported. It is certainly understandable that those facing deportation and removal proceedings may have numerous questions regarding what these proceedings entail. It is important to note that every case is different and laws may vary slightly depending on individual circumstances, but some basic procedures typically apply to most cases.

Deportation simply is the removal of a foreigner from the country for violating immigration laws. There are several government agencies involved in this process; some who are responsible for detaining undocumented immigrants and others who preside over the court proceedings. A removal hearing is performed to determine if immigration laws were broken and if deportation is warranted.

Removal proceedings start with a notice to appear. This notice is served to the immigrant and includes several key facts of information regarding their specific case, including the nature of the proceedings, charges filed for any laws violated, consequences for not showing up to scheduled hearings and a notice of rights regarding obtaining legal counsel. For immigrants who have been detained, bond can be paid for release and a bond hearing can be scheduled to appeal the bond amount. With or without legal counsel, a case can be made during the removal hearing for these individuals to remain in the country.

The end result of removal proceedings in California will vary from person to person. For some, it may result in deportation to their home country, while others are granted permission to stay. The outcome is usually determined by the immigrant’s eligibility for removal relief. Certain criteria must be met to obtain this relief, which can be somewhat complicated to understand yet entirely possible to qualify for. The idea of deportation and removal proceedings can be frightening, but understanding the process and seeking assistance when needed can help ease fears and help prepare for what lies ahead.

Source:, “The Removal Process,” July 31, 2014