What are your rights as an undocumented immigrant in the U.S.? When faced with legal repercussions from remaining undocumented in the U.S., it can feel highly overwhelming to know what you’re legally entitled to.
It can be easy to assume that, as an undocumented immigrant, you have no rights within the U.S.. However, this is not true. In fact, there are three important rights to be aware of if you are facing a legal conviction within the U.S..
The Right to a Criminal Defense Attorney
Many non-U.S. citizens that have chosen to live in the U.S. undocumented unfortunately come to face deportation as a result of their lack of official status as an immigrant. In this situation, it is also common that this individual does, in fact, have family members who are legal immigrants of the U.S..
If you are facing charges and deportation, it’s important to know your rights. As an undocumented immigrant, you have a right to have a defense attorney should you require one. If you don’t have one, you have the constitutional right to have one provided for you.
The Right to Not Plead Guilty
You have the right to plead not guilty. Under the U.S. constitution, every individual charged with a crime, whether that individual is an undocumented immigrant, visitor, or citizen has the right to plead not guilty. All too often, undocumented immigrants are charged and, without proper legal counsel, plead guilty because it seems to be the only option. One such example of this common situation is documented by Jeremy Borden in a Washington Post article. It’s important to know that this is not the case.
The Right to Post Bond
A bond is a conditional document that, when signed, allows the defendant to officially agree to the terms that he or she will be liable for criminal, and in some cases civil, penalties if he or she fails to appear in court. Undocumented immigrants aren’t exempt from this constitutional right; these individuals have the right to be considered for bond both before a Criminal court and before the federal Immigration court. Undocumented immigrants may be required to post a bond in the county in which he or she is detained, before seeking a bond before an Immigration court judge.
Posting a bond allows an undocumented immigrant the ability to be released while fighting their case. This helps to ensure that the case is pursued in the most effective and efficient way possible. Some immigrants are eligible for help in paying a cash bond through Freedom for Immigrant’s National Bond Fund.
Knowing where and how to find the information you need is important when facing deportation. The U.S. Department of Justice Executive Office for Immigration Review and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) offers news, directories and updates in regard to immigration law.
In addition, finding the right immigration case consultant for personalized support for your individual case can make a difference in clarity, confidence and a fair trial. The right legal counsel will be able to provide advice and help you through every step of your case to ensure that you have endured a fair trial under the U.S. Department of Justice. For your free immigration case consultation, call 1 (866) 641-7517.