Learn more about the deportation process and other related issues.


Deportation (removal) is the act and process of formally removing foreign nationals from one country and returning them to their country of origin. The United States will deport foreign nationals if they violate U.S. immigration law.  

To report someone you think may be in the USA illegally, use this online form or call 1-866-347-2423 (in the U.S., Mexico, or Canada) or 1-802-872-6199 (from other countries).

After the deportation process begins:

  • An Immigration Court in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) hears the related case.
  • If a judge rules that the deportation proceed, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) carries out a removal order.

If you have questions or need help, find a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office.  

Appeal a Deportation Order

You may appeal certain deportation rulings. Seek legal advice before making an appeal; there are nonprofit organizations that can help. Contact USCIS if you have questions about filing an appeal.

Apply for Readmission After Deportation or Removal

If you are deported, you may be able to apply for readmission. Contact USCIS for more information about applying for readmission after deportation.

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Locate a Person Held for an Immigration Violation

You can locate someone who is currently detained for possible violation of immigration laws or who was released within the last 60 days, by using the  Online Detainee Locator System or by getting in touch with one of the field offices of the Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).  

If you know which facility the person is being held, call that immigration detention facility directly.  

For information or matters pertaining to the status of a particular court case, contact the Immigration Court.  

If you're looking for a person held in a federal prison for a reason not related to illegal immigration, use the prisoner locator run by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.  

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Avoid Deportation If You Were Brought to the U.S. As a Child

If someone brought you to the U.S. as a child and you do not have legal U.S. resident or immigration status, you may be eligible to request a two-year delay (deferral) in any action against you by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program allows you to remain in the United States and to obtain a work permit, but it does not allow you to apply for citizenship. 

There are different guidelines and procedures for first-time applicants and those seeking a renewal. The USCIS has answers to frequently asked questions to help you decide if you qualify and what the process is.

The USCIS often recommends that applicants in complicated matters request legal assistance. You can also contact a USCIS office directly for assistance with basic questions.  

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Last Updated: February 14, 2017

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