When you have been detained by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), you can request a bond. This bond is akin to a guarantee that you will attend your court hearings and do what the judge orders you to do. And you want to attend these hearings and do as the judge orders because not doing so will work against you and your chances to stay in the United States.
Understanding what bond proceedings are and what they mean for your immigration case is important. It can go a long way to making sure you comply with the bond. Below is a brief overview of what you should know about bond proceedings in California. If you or someone you love faces deportation or is detained in a detention facility, contact Gopal Shah at (510) 402-4570 to schedule a consultation and to learn more.
What is an Immigration Bond?
An immigration bond is money you pay to secure the release of a detained immigrant who has been living allegedly unlawfully in the United States and now is in the custody of Homeland Security. An immigration bond is known as ICE Form 1-352.
Bail bonds usually start at around $1,500. The specific amount is set by the District Director of ICE. The Director will consider factors like:
- how long the detainee has been in the United States;
- whether or not there are family members in the United States;
- criminal record, if any;
- employment history; and
- immigration violations, if any.
There are four types of immigration bonds:
- G (1) Delivery Bond. This bond is conditioned upon the delivery of an "alien" and is the most common of immigration bonds.
- G (2) Public Safety Bond. This bond ensures that the "alien" does not become a public charge – if the immigrant accepted any form of public assistance, this bond ensures the assistance will be reimbursed to the government.
- G (3) Voluntary Departure Bond. This bond is granted to an alien who has agreed to return to his or her home country.
- G (4) Order of Supervision Bond. This bond ensures that the individual fully performs the conditions of the bond and surrenders for removal.
Bonds are required for undocumented immigrants and Green Card holders who:
- are in the custody of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement; and
- are waiting for the outcome of a pending case.
When an immigration bond is ordered and you or a loved one is able to post bond, the detainee will be released from custody. You or your loved one will also remain free in the United States throughout the course of the case.
How Do You Get an Immigration Bond?
ICE will inform you if a bond has already been set or if a bond will be denied.
To obtain a bond when one hasn't yet been set, you must request it. This can be done at your first hearing before an immigration judge or else you can request a bond hearing by writing a bond hearing request letter to the judge. Upon your request, a hearing is set. The bond hearing is the main part of any bond proceeding.
When the bond hearing is set, your attorney will attend it. The court will consider if you are eligible or not for a bond. If so, the court will order which bond type is applicable in your case.
To be eligible, your attorney must show:
- You are not a danger to the community; and
- You are not a flight risk.
ICE may refuse to give a bond if you have ever been deported in the past or if you haven't cooperated with them.
To help your case, you will want to bring certain documentation to the bond hearing, like:
- a sponsor letter
- evidence you have a strong case for relief from deportation
- proof of close relative in the United States
- any tax records
- support letters from family, religious organizations, and community members,
- other documentation that your attorney requests.
If a bond is granted, the order will advise you of the amount. If the amount is too high, your attorney may be able to request a lower amount, which could mean another court hearing.
How is Bond Posted?
Payments for bonds are accepted only by money orders issued by a bank or the post office if the bond is less than $10,000, or by a bank certified cashier's check for any bond amount. You cannot post bond by cash, credit cards, personal, checks, or money orders issued anywhere else other than a bank of U.S. post office.
The detainee's family member or friend must pay the bond at the local ICE office. You may need to make an appointment first. You must also bring photo identification and proof that you are in the United States legally when you pay the bond.
What Happens if Bond Is Denied?
If the bond is denied, you will remain at the detention facility and your hearings will likely also be held there. Keep in mind that even if your bond is denied, you still have rights, like:
- the right to an attorney;
- the right to a fair hearing; and
- the right to appeal court decisions.
Contact a Bond Proceeding Attorney in California Today
To know more about your bond proceedings or to get help from a trusted immigration attorney, contact Gopal Shah today.