Immigration bonds are a form of federal bond and are typically set for detainees held by the US Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) pending a hearing or court appearance. If your loved one has been detained by ICE, you may be able to secure their release if you can obtain an immigration bond.
Navigating The Immigration Bond Process
Once you are able to contact the detainee, an attorney can make a motion for a “bond hearing” if a bond has not already been set. Everyone who has been detained by immigration is entitled to a bond hearing. You can also request a hearing in the initial bond set by the judge is too high.
Similar to bail in a traditional criminal case, a bond allows the detainee to go free until their future court date. If he or she appears for court, the bond is returned.
At the hearing, an immigration judge determines whether your loved can be released on bond – or whether he or she is subject to mandatory detention. You must pay the bond before the detainee can be released. A “Master Calendar” date will be set, at which the detainee must appear and answer ICE’s allegations. The process may take a few months or even a few years, depending on the court docket and what kinds of relief the immigrant has available.
After an immigration attorney files a motion for a bond hearing, the hearing is usually scheduled to happen within one to two weeks. The judge reviews all the preliminary issues and determines whether the detainee is eligible for bond. The judge also determines whether the detainee is a flight risk. You must provide evidence that you meet all the requirements to qualify for a bond.
Eligibility for Immigration Bonds
Not every immigrant detained by ICE can qualify for a bond. You are NOT eligible for bond if:
- You were detained at the border while trying to enter the country
- You have multiple convictions for crimes of moral turpitude
- You have been convicted of an aggravated felony
- You have been convicted of one or more drug offenses or offenses involving firearms
- Visit our page devoted to criminal immigration issues