Video: Know Your Rights as An Accused Noncitizen
What happens if you are an undocumented immigrant and you get arrested?
You have more rights than you think. Immigration attorney Howard Silverman explains that even undocumented immigrants have certain legal protections. If you’ve been detained you’re entitled to:
- Private legal representation.
- Freedom from illegal search an seizure. Police must obtain a warrant or have probable cause to conduct a search of you or your property.
There have been 1.1 million deportations under the Obama administration, and this trend is set to accelerate with the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold part of Arizona’s controversial immigration law, requiring law enforcement to check the immigration status of people they’ve detained, or even stopped for traffic violations.
Silverman stresses the importance of hiring a lawyer as soon as possible if you are detained or arrested, but he cautions undocumented immigrants to be careful when choosing representation. There are many scam artists who prey on immigrants by charging for legal services they aren’t qualified to provide, often ruining any chance of obtaining legal status.