How to avoid being deported: a lawyer explained Biden’s new decree on the southern border - ForumDaily
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How to avoid being deported: a lawyer explained Biden’s new decree on the southern border

In early June, President Joe Biden signed a new decree. Now applying for asylum on the border with Mexico is almost impossible. Those who try to cross the border illegally are immediately sent for deportation. We asked immigration lawyer Ekaterina Muratova explain what this means and what to do now for those who want to obtain asylum in the United States.

Photo: iStock.com/Brad Greeff

For several years, entering the United States from the southern border was quite easy. If you planned to apply for asylum, you had to register in the CBP One application - this is an electronic queue for crossing the border. Then you should have stayed in Mexico and waited for an open window to cross over. At first it was quite fast. But over time, the waiting lines grew, and now people wait for six months, or even more. But there is a category of people who do not want to wait and cross the US border bypassing the queue. They either pass illegally outside checkpoints or ask for asylum as soon as they enter the country. These are the people who are affected by the new law that President Joe Biden signed on June 4.

"The difference is that before all these people were caught, given a document that they had to appear in court in a few years, and released. And these migrants could legally stay in the United States all this time. They had the opportunity to calmly prepare their case, contact a lawyer, and over time, many had alternative ways of entering the country. Now all this will not happen, says immigration lawyer Ekaterina Muratova. — Anyone who is caught will be immediately sent for deportation. With rare exceptions.

Who will not be deported, and why our people are too self-confident

There are several categories of people who will not be affected by the new deportation decree. These primarily include children who cross the border unaccompanied by an adult, migrants experiencing medical emergencies, and victims of human trafficking (such as those brought to the United States for sexual exploitation).

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Everyone else also has a chance to avoid accelerated deportation. To do this, right at the border, you should loudly declare that you are afraid to return to your country.

“In this case, a so-called fear interview is immediately conducted with the migrant. It has been carried out before, but selectively. Now they will interview everyone who said they were afraid to return to their homeland, - clarifies Ekaterina Muratova. - PIt’s not enough just to express fear during this interview; you also need to explain what exactly is threatening you. And if the officers determine that what the person said gives him the potential to seek asylum in the United States, then such an applicant will be allowed into the country; others, again, will be deported.

Five categories of migrants can apply for asylum - these are people who are persecuted for:

  • political beliefs;
  • race;
  • religion;
  • nationality;
  • belonging to a particular social group.

“Unfortunately, Russian-speaking migrants from all over the post-Soviet space often have a certain self-confidence. It seems to them that they are all literate - they will immediately ask for asylum, and everything will be fine with them. But these people often do not take into account the main thing - it is very important WHAT threatens you in your homeland. Recently there was a mass deportation of Russian citizens who fled from mobilization, because this was not a reason to seek asylum. Or sometimes people accumulate a lot of debt and then hide from creditors, or there are some conflicts with private individuals. That is, migrants simply share with the officer everything bad that happened in their lives, and they don’t even think that this is not at all a basis for asylum in the United States.”, explains Ekaterina.

Immigration lawyer Ekaterina Muratova. Photos from the personal archive

Is it possible to challenge a deportation decision?

If a person who crossed the border illegally could not explain why he came to the United States, and they decided to deport him, this is a one-way path. Such a decision cannot be challenged, and it is usually issued along with a five-year ban on entry into the country. But if a migrant managed to ask for asylum, he was interviewed for fear and the officer still decided to refuse him, there may be a small loophole.

"After the refusal, you have only 7 days to challenge it in court. This is usually quite difficult to do,” Ekaterina Muratova shares her experience. — The person is in custody, and he urgently needs to find a lawyer, if he did not have one before, and, together with the lawyer, develop a strategy on how to prove to the judge that the officer was wrong. Most often, when people with such problems call us, they have already missed this short deadline to dispute something".

Since the adoption of the decree, more and more rumors began to appear that deportation across the ocean is an expensive matter and, they say, all residents of post-Soviet countries can count on being simply released so as not to spend money on a ticket. But the lawyer advises not to believe such stories.

“Let me remind you that over the previous year, 750 thousand people were deported! The US government is now allocating additional resources for this. For example, several immigration centers were recently closed where families who crossed the border illegally lived. Their maintenance was quite expensive, so some of these centers were closed and the funds were used to pay for deportation flights.”, comments the lawyer.

Main advice: be patient and do everything according to the law

As Ekaterina assures, in the current situation the main thing is not to try to cross the border illegally. After all, even if you are allowed into the country, you will automatically be subject to a presumption of guilt. And proving the opposite in court will be a difficult task. Instead, your best bet is to prepare in advance, register in the CBP One app, and wait for your crossing in Mexico.

"It is important to know your situation and be able to explain why you are eligible to claim asylum. Of course, it makes sense to seek a lawyer even while you are waiting for your crossing in Mexico. We don't help migrants make up a story, but we do explain how to tell it in a way that makes sense to an immigration officer who doesn't have to know anything about their country. Our task is to explain what to say, when and what to emphasize.”, emphasizes Ekaterina.

In addition, lawyers help some people get into the United States before their turn under CBP One. For example, if a person is sick or some kind of misfortune has happened to him, you can apply for a humanitarian password.

"For example, among our clients there was a family with children who were robbed in Mexico and literally left with nothing. They contacted the police, everything was recorded, and we were able to get them a humanitarian password to enter the United States. But here, of course, the decisive thing was that they were with children. It probably wouldn't work for adults.“, the lawyer suggests.

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In general, the Ekaterina Muratova does not believe that the new decree will bring any radical changes to the situation at the border. Those who tried to enter the country legally will continue to register in the application and wait their turn. And those who seek to get into the United States by any means will, in the same way, penetrate through fences, often with the help of gangs and cartels. The only difference is that before they waited for the immigration police to arrive and give them papers to await trial, but now they will simply run away.

However, everything may change soon. After all, the new decree is a temporary measure. It will end when the number of attempts to illegally cross the border falls below 1500 per day. The number of detained migrants must remain at this level for three weeks, and the decree will be cancelled. For comparison: now about 3700 illegal immigrants try to cross the southern border every day.

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deportation immigration lawyer Ekaterina Muratova Immigration in the USA asylum in the usa
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