Louisiana Immigration Law Firm

Ashley Dees LLC is now Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. Please visit www.bal.com for more information.

Protecting Your Family from Immigration Issues When You are Detained

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has increased its efforts since the Trump Administration began, especially in regards to locating undocumented immigrants and deporting them. While ICE has promised to focus its raids on undocumented immigrants with criminal backgrounds, this has not proven entirely true. It appears that anyone who is found without proper documentation or immigrant status is at risk of removal. If you are worried that you could be detained and deported due to ICE agents, then you need to start thinking about what could also happen to your family and children.

Your Best Tool is a Well-Made Plan

Detainment or deportation can come quite unexpectedly. Some counties and cities have instructed local-level police officers to carry out ICE agent duties, meaning a local sheriff or officer you once knew and trusted could detain you. Create a plan about what your family should do as soon as possible to remove as much guesswork from the situation as possible.

Here is a quick list of tips to recall when making a plan for your family in case you get detained:

  • Write down a list of important phone numbers, such as emergency contacts, your immigration attorney, and so on. It is always helpful to have a written, physical list, and not always rely on digital information on smartphones and in emails.
  • Create additional copies of all crucial legal documents for all family members, such as passports and birth certificates. Store them in a safe place your family can access easily.
  • Consider assigning a close, trusted friend to be the standby guardian of your children. In case you get detained or deported, your standby guardian will get legal guardianship for up to one year; it also expires if you are allowed to return to your family. Standby guardianship can also be assigned with an attorney’s help and does not need court approval, it only needs the approval of the guardian and all current parents.

Closer Look at Standby Guardianship

Taking care of your little ones after you are detained or deported needs to be a top priority. With this said, it is worth looking at the details of standby guardianship.

The standby guardian of your choice will essentially receive parental rights once you are detained. This means he or she can and is expected to provide your children with food, shelter, clothing, and a reasonably safe living environment. A standby guardian also has to see to it that your children attend school as planned and that they get any necessary medical attention. Depending on how long you believe guardianship will last, your standby guardian can also be instructed to handle matters pertaining to medical insurance, Social Security benefits or payments, food stamps, and so on.

If you have additional questions about preparing for a scenario in which you are detained and deported but your family is permitted to stay within the United States, please do not hesitate to contact Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. Our Lake Charles immigration attorney has personally managed thousands of immigration cases to success. The top priority when handling your case will be protecting the rights and best interests of yourself and your family, no matter what ICE or the USCIS attempts. Call 337.214.0670 for more information.