Alien Hindering Removal

Failure to Leave the U.S. After a Deportation Order

Foreign nationals may be removable from the United States for violations including failure to abide by the terms and conditions of admission or engaging in crimes such as violent crimes, document and benefit fraud, terrorist activity, and drug smuggling. In general, all legal permanent residents are given the opportunity to present their case before an immigration judge. Aliens who have entered without inspection (EWI) are entitled to a removal hearing before an immigration judge unless they fall under the category of "arriving aliens".

When an immigrant is ordered removed, the Attorney General requires him or her to leave the United States within a three month (90 day) period. The removal time frame begins on the latest of the following:

  • The date the order of removal is finalized;
  • The date of the court's final order after a judicial review;
  • If the alien is detained or imprisoned, the date the alien is released from detention.

Hindering Removal

If the alien fails to leave or is not removed within the 90 day removal period, the alien is then subject to supervision under guidelines prescribed by the Attorney General. The guidelines include provisions requiring the following:

  • The alien must periodically appear before an immigration officer for identification;
  • He or she may be required to undergo a medical and psychiatric examination;
  • The alien must provide information under oath about his/her nation of origin, circumstances, habits, associations, and activities, etc.;
  • The alien must obey written restrictions regarding conduct or activities as prescribed by the Attorney General.

Consequences of Hindering Removal

Under 8 USC § 1253, any alien who does not leave the United States within the removal period, does not take steps to secure travel arrangements, conspires to prevent their departure, and/or fails to present himself for removal at the time and place required by the Attorney General may also be found guilty of hindering his or her removal. This offense carries a maximum term of imprisonment of four years, a period of supervised release following imprisonment, and a maximum fine of $250,000.

The Federal Sentencing Guidelines dictate that the court may suspend the sentence of an alien and order the alien's release based on some extenuating factors:

  • The alien's health, age, and duration of detention;
  • How the alien's release impacts public safety and national security;
  • The probability of the alien engaging in activity making him/her deportable;
  • The effort made by the alien or his foreign representatives to expedite departure from the U.S.;
  • Inability of the U.S. government to secure passports, documentation, or removal facilities from the nation(s) the alien has been ordered to be sent;
  • Eligibility for discretionary relief.

Once an alien is released under supervision, he/she must comply with the regulations that the release is contingent upon. Failure to comply can result in fines up to $1,000, imprisonment of up to a year, or both. As always, you can consult with our immigration lawyer at the Law Offices of Simone Bertolini for assistance.

If you have an outstanding order of deportation, or have been accused of Hindering Removal, you have to speak to a New Jersey Immigration Attorney as soon as possible. For a free initial consultation, please contact us or fill out a case evaluation form on our website.

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