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Biden administration reverses where immigrants can be arrested

Being an undocumented immigrant in the Chicago can be stressful. On one hand, you came to this country in seek of a better life for you and your loved ones. You may have been escaping poverty or war in your home nation. However, once in the U.S. you may live in constant fear of being arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and deported. The Biden administration, however, has recently puts limits on where immigrants can be arrested.

Previous policy on immigration enforcement

Prior to the Biden administration, ICE could enter federal, state and local courthouses for the purposes of placing immigrants under arrest for reasons that were not related to their immigration status. This meant someone serving as a witness in a trial, seeking a restraining order or pursuing simple complaints were being seized by federal agents.

Biden administration issues changes to immigration enforcement

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the Biden administration is reversing the Trump administration’s policy on immigration enforcement. Federal agents are no longer able to arrest immigrants in or near a courthouse for immigration transgressions. It is stated that to arrest an immigrant at or near a courthouse will interfere with the administration of justice and public safety. Essentially, previous policy allowing such arrests had a chilling effect on an immigrant’s willingness to appear in court or cooperate with police.

Under the new policy, an arrest in or near a courthouse will only be allowed if it is a national security matter, if there is a risk of physical harm or death to someone, if it involves a hot pursuit of someone who is a threat to public safety or if there is an imminent risk of evidence in a criminal case being destroyed.

Learn more about immigration in Illinois

This change in policy is important for all immigrants in Illinois to understand. Immigration law can be confusing, but help is available. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on immigration may be a good starting point for those who want to learn more about this topic.

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