August 31, 2022

How to Interact with the Police if They Enquire About Your Immigration Status

Interactions with a member of a police department can be frightening for most individuals. Regardless of your immigration status, if an officer starts chatting with you at your job site, knocks at your door, or stops you on the road, you might get anxious or lose your cool. Displaying such behavior can land you in more trouble than you would have anticipated. If you get into trouble due to your behavior with a police officer in Houston or anywhere else in the state, a Texas immigrant attorney can help you. However, we would still strongly suggest you calm your nerves and be courteous when interacting with a member of any law enforcement agency.

Citizens of the United States, Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs), Conditional Residents, and individuals on an investor visa do not have to worry if an officer asks them about their immigration status or citizenship. If one of these is your legal status, you may calmly answer the officer’s questions, or you can also exercise your right to remain silent if you so desire. However, if you are a non-immigrant, someone covered under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS), or an undocumented immigrant, you can face severe consequences if you lie to an officer or in any way try to conceal facts about your residential status in the United States.

Tell the Truth

Suppose an officer in Houston catches your lies or has doubts about your residential status in the country. The consequences of your lies or concealment can be detrimental to you and your family. In that case, you will immediately need help from an experienced Houston immigrant attorney. If you do not seek help from a competent deportation lawyer in Texas, you can face immediate deportation to your home country. You can also be permanently disallowed from applying for US citizenship. So, our first suggestion to anyone in such a situation is to always choose your words carefully when talking to an officer, or better still, do not talk at all.

Here are other precautions to take to ensure you do not get into trouble:

  • Avoid lying at all costs. As explained previously, lying lands you in a lot of trouble which you can avoid. Keep yourself calm and answer all the questions the officer asks if you have the documents that prove your residential status. If you are in doubt or anxious, tell the officer that you would like to speak to your lawyer before answering any questions.
  • Exercise your right to remain silent. Laws in the United States allow a person to stay quiet when an officer questions them. Under most conditions, an officer must state this right before they proceed to ask questions. However, even if they do not, you can choose not to answer the questions they are asking. Once an experienced Texas immigrant attorney is by your side, they will guide you in all your interactions with law enforcement agencies.
  • Always ask for a warrant. If you are in the comfort of your home and a member of the police department knocks on your door, you can refuse them entry to your house if they do not have a warrant. Even if they have a warrant, but it is a search warrant, they can only search in places and for the items specifically mentioned in the warrant. In cases where an officer comes with an ICE warrant, which is meant for the removal or deportation of an individual, you can still refuse them entry to your house.

Call Us Today, We Can Help

Immigration law can seem complicated, especially to someone new to the US who does not have anyone by their side capable of guiding them. At The Law Offices of Nomani & Nomani, we have a team of experienced Houston immigration attorneys who are compassionate as well as competent in immigration law. If someone you love is at the risk of getting deported or is being interrogated for their residential status by an officer anywhere in Texas, our Texas immigrant attorneys can guide you in all matters of immigration law. Call us at (713) 789-7500  to book a consultation.

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