JAD Logo
JAD Logo

What is Expedited Removal?

October 18, 2021

Expedited removal is a type of “summary” deportation. Expedited removal allows the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to deport non-United States citizens immediately and without a formal court hearing. According to the United States immigration law, individuals who can be deported through the expedited removal process are those who:

  • Entered the United States without valid documents, including visas and passports, or 
  • Got entry to the United States by misrepresentation and actual or attempted fraud.

Individuals deported by expedited removal are those who are caught entering the United States unlawfully.

However, because of a recent White House Executive Order expanding expedited removal, United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) can summarily deport any individual who:

  • Is suspected of being in the United States unlawfully, and
  • Can't prove that they have been in the United States continuously for at least two years.

Persons in expedited removal proceedings may not get immigration court hearings in front of an immigration judge. But they can still stay in the United States if:

  • They are United States citizens, a lawful permanent resident, green card holder), or they're lawfully admitted asylee or refugee, or
  • They have a credible fear of persecution or fear of torture if deported to their native country.

If you or a loved one are facing an expedited removal, it's essential to contact experienced legal counsel. At The Law Office of Jason A. Dennis, we have helped thousands of clients facing immigration court proceedings get a favorable outcome and we can help you, too. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact our experienced New York immigration lawyers today at 516-494-7373

What is the Expedited Removal Rule?

Expedited removal is the legal authority given to even low-level immigration officials to deport some non-United States citizens with no due process protections granted to other people—such as the right to a deportation defense attorney and to a formal hearing before a judge. 

Today, immigration officers can summarily order the removal of any foreign national who arrives at the United States border without proper paperwork. Further, undocumented immigrants who have been in the U.S. for 14 days or less since entering without proper documents are subject to expedited removal if an immigration official encounters them within 100 miles of the international land border of the United States with Canada or Mexico.

Typically, the DHS only applies expedited removal to Canadian nationals and Mexican nationals with a history of criminal or immigration violations and foreign nationals from other countries who are transiting through Canada or Mexico. You can't appeal an immigration officer’s decision to deport you or a family member via expedited removal. Individuals facing expedited removal are detained until their removal from the country. 

What is Expedited Removal?

Under the law, expedited removal doesn't apply to certain individuals. These include United States nationals or those with permanent residence, including green card holders. These individuals aren't subject to expedited removal. Further, refugees, asylum seekers, and asylees aren't subject to deportation or those with a credible fear of persecution in their native country.

Instead, asylum seekers are referred to an asylum officer for an interview to establish if they have a credible fear of persecution in their home country. If a person has been deported in the past, an asylum officer establishes whether that person has a reasonable fear of persecution; this is a higher standard than credible fears. If the asylum officer can't determine that the individual has a reasonable or credible fear of return, the person is ordered to be removed from the United States.

Before deportation, the person can challenge the asylum official's adverse finding by requesting a formal hearing in front of an immigration judge, who must review the case to the maximum extent within 24 hours, but no later than 7 days. The judge’s review can only assess whether your fear is credible or reasonable. Those with a credible or reasonable fear of persecution are detained waiting for further review of their asylum cases. Sometimes, these persons may be released from detention—and permitted to remain in the country while their asylum cases are pending. 

In January 2017, an exception to expedited removal was made for aliens who are citizens or natives of a country in the Western Hemisphere where the United States doesn't have full diplomatic relations. And those aliens who arrive in the United States by aircraft at ports of entry. Cuban citizens arriving in the United States by aircraft were excluded from expedited removal under this rule, but in the last days of the Obama administration, the DHS published a provision eliminating Cuban nationals from this exemption.

What is the Procedure of Expedited Removal?

After an immigration enforcement officer--working for United States Customs and Border Protection) comes in contact with an individual who is eligible for expedited removal, the immigration officer must ask the person if they want to apply for asylum or has credible persecution or torture if returned to their home country.

  • If the person responds affirmatively, they're issued a Form M-444 Information About Credible Fear Interview and interviewed to determine the legitimacy of their credible fear by an immigration official.
  • If the individual answers negatively, or after the individual answers positively but receives an unfavorable judgment in the credible fear interview, the individual is issued Form I-860 Notice and Order of Expedited Removal.
  • The person may now be deported from the United States.

It's essential to note that you can't appeal an expedited removal order. However, you can challenge the order to the United States Customs and Border Protection to reconsider the order. You must file your petition within 30 days of the decision. Based on the evidence and information you provide, the U.S. Customers and Border Protection can exercise its discretion and overturn its previous expedited removal order. If you're issued an expedited removal order at a designated port of entry, including an airport, you can also file a complaint with the DHS's Traveler Redress Inquiry Program.

How Can You Prove Residency in the United States?

As an alien, if you're facing expedited removal proceedings you must be given an opportunity to determine that you were lawfully admitted to the United States

The immigration enforcement officer can consider government-issued identification along with other documentation, such as phone records, receipts, and utility bills.

This documentation may be in the possession of an alien. If the alien doesn't carry such documentation on their person, such documentation must be kept elsewhere where they're easily accessible by a friend, immigration lawyer, or family member. The examining immigration official must consider all such evidence, and if necessary, make further inquiries.

Do you need a lawyer for expedited removal?

However, ultimately, the burden is on the alien to prove to the examining officer that he or she is in the United States lawfully. And even though lawful admission is established, the immigration officer may examine the case to establish if the alien is deportable or inadmissible on some other grounds.

A person who has been deported by expedited removal can't return to the United States for at least 5 years or longer, based on the individual’s immigration and criminal history. However, if the basis for the expedited removal was claiming falsely to be a United States citizen or fraudulent entry documents, the individual is barred from returning to the United States for life.

Thus, lying about your immigration status can have severe negative consequences. Those who are barred from entering the United States for any length of time can apply for permission to have the time in which they're inadmissible waived. But the United States isn't obligated to grant a waiver.

If you or a loved one needs an experienced criminal defense or immigration lawyer in New York, we invite you to contact our New York City law office for a free consultation.

Our skilled New York immigration lawyers can help defend you in your immigration proceeding cases or help you apply for permission to enter or remain in the United States lawfully. To schedule your no-cost initial consultation call, one of our experienced New York immigration attorneys today at 516-494-7373

Free Consultation
tagcalendar-fullcrossmenu linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram