Generally, in setting the amount of the bond that the detained alien must pay for their temporary release, the Immigration Judge should consider the detained alien’s financial ability to pay the bond. If a detained alien fails to post a bond or fails to find a bondsman or surety company that can underwrite the bond, the alien arrested will remain in custody of the Immigration Court and remain in detention for the duration of the removal proceedings. The detention will last for as long as the duration of the removal proceedings, which may take as short as six months or as long as two years.
Are there alternatives to immigration detention and release on immigration bonds?
If the detained alien succeeds in presenting convincing evidence that the detained alien does not pose a danger to the public, is not a flight risk and is not a danger of becoming a public charge, the Immigration Court must explore other alternatives to detention that are available.
Requiring a bond for temporary release from immigration custody is supposed to deter further illegal immigration into the US. However, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has opened the possibility of detained aliens being released on their own recognizance. No person in the US, whether a citizen or a non-citizen should be detained solely because of inability to pay the bond. Instead of posting a bond, the Immigration Court may require weekly Immigration check-in with the Department of Homeland Security.
How will my inability to post a bond affect my removal proceedings?
The bond hearing is a separate and distinct proceeding from the removal proceedings. The records of the bond hearing are different from the records of the main removal proceedings. A favorable result in the bond hearing and being allowed to post a bond does not in any way affect or influence the outcome of the removal proceedings. Consequently, failure to post a bond after a decision of the Immigration Court, allowing the alien to post a bond will not affect the outcome of the removal proceedings. Some evidence presented at the bond hearing may be relevant or material to the removal proceedings and may be presented during the removal proceedings.
If the detained alien’s family has hired a lawyer, the detained lawyer may experience difficulty in locating which detention center the alien is being held. If the alien is detained at an immigration detention center that is far from the immigration lawyer’s residence and or business address, the lawyer will use up valuable time and incur considerable expense to see the detained alien at the detention facility they are in.
If the detained alien or his relatives have not yet hired a lawyer, the detained alien will have difficulty finding a lawyer to represent them and difficulty obtaining the services of a lawyer. They will have difficulty coordinating and communicating with their lawyer when they remain in detention. Any possible documents that they need as evidence will be difficult for them to procure. Witnesses will be difficult to contact.
More importantly, the detained alien will not be able to see or speak with their family or earn a living (if they had a job). The detained alien may even be dismissed from their employment as a result of their detention. They will not be able to explore and apply efficiently for other immigration relief that may be available to them.
Are there other alternatives to posting a bond to obtain release from immigration detention?
In case the detained alien has no funds with which to pay the bond or even post a surety bond by paying a small percentage of the bond, the detained alien may need to look for other remedies such as seeking the redetermination of the custody. A redetermination of the custody is a hearing where the alien questions the right of the ICE to detain them.
In the alternative, the detained alien may ask the Court to consider other options to release on bonds such as a release on their own recognizance or a release on the recognizance of their lawyer and/or release on the recognizance of the civic group working for their release. Or, the detained alien may seek a redetermination of the bond at a later date when the alien has succeeded in finding and/or gathering enough funds post bond.
When an alien in custody and detention has succeeded in obtaining the Court’s permission to post a bond, and yet, the alien is unable to post the bond set by the Immigration Judge because of a lack of funds, it is possible for the detained alien to ask for a redetermination of the bond at some later date especially when the detained alien’s circumstances have changed materially.
In case the detained alien does not agree with the Immigration Judge that continued detention of the illegal alien will be justified, or when the alien disagrees that the amount of bond is reasonable given the presented evidence, detained alien may seek to appeal the bond to the Board of Immigration Appeals.
Are you or a loved one willing to explore other alternative reasons for the alien to be released from custody? Do you need assistance in asking for a bond redetermination? Are you interested in appealing the bond determination by the Immigration Bond? Call any of our Immigration Attorneys. Speak to them today.