Returning to the U.S. After You Have Been Removed by ICE

Returning to the U.S. After You Have Been Removed by ICE Now, President Trump appoints the Secretary of Homeland Security, the U.S. government department over Citizenship & Immigration Services (CIS), Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP). During the 2016 presidential election campaign, then-candidate Trump uttered harsh words about immigration and immigrants. When he became President, he has followed through on his campaign promises, and appointed as the head of these government agencies people who share his views. His administration has called for more detentions and removals by ICE. Even so, under federal immigration law, it may be possible to return to the U.S. even if ICE has removed or deported an immigrant.

Here are the guidelines or rules for returning to the country.

  1. I have been removed from the U.S. Can I return?

Often, yes: you can. But you may not be allowed to return to the U.S., if, for example, you were removed because you committed a crime, or because you present a serious national security consideration, or your return may result in serious adverse foreign policy considerations. However, under many ordinary circumstances, you should be able to return to the country at some point. If a court of appeals grants your petition for review, you must contact the Department of Homeland Security.

  1. My case is pending review with the Court of Appeals. Do I still have to leave, if I am scheduled for removal?

Yes, you do. Your case does not end simply because you are no longer in the country. In fact, you may not even be required to come back to present your case. You may be allowed to present your case via teleconference or through other means. If you were a lawful permanent resident, however, and the decision made by the court voids the final order for removal, then you can return at any time.

  1. I am returning to the U.S. What do I need, in order to come back?

In order to return to the U.S., either by order or by choice, you will need the following:

  • A valid passport
  • A valid visa (immigrant or nonimmigrant), or a transportation/boarding letter (for air travel only)

You are responsible for all fees and costs associated with transportation back to the United States. Even if your final removal order is invalidated, you must still pay for your own transportation.

  1. What do I need to do before I return?

Aside from gathering the appropriate documentation, you must also contact ICE before you come back to the U.S. The Custody Programs Division will assign you a point of contact. He or she will tell you if you need to supply any more information before you return, and will help you coordinate with Customs and Border Protection (CPB). Any questions you have should be directed to your point of contact, but you can reach the Custody Divisions Program by calling 888-351-4024 or emailing

Nashville immigration attorney Perry A. Craft can help you if you have been removed from the country by ICE, or if you are at risk of being deported. If you have questions or need help, please call the Law Office of Perry A. Craft at 615-953-3808 or fill out our contact form.