If you are living in the U.S. without a valid immigration status, you may feel extremely isolated. You are not alone, though. In fact, according to the Pew Research Center, there are more than 10 million undocumented immigrants in the country.
Not having a valid immigration status can expose you to deportation and other immigration-related consequences, though. If officers from Immigration and Customs Enforcement come to your door, you may wonder whether you have to let them into your home.
Do officers have a search warrant?
Allowing ICE officers to enter your house may lead to your arrest. Therefore, it is always a good idea to exercise caution when interacting with any member of law enforcement.
If ICE officers are at your door, you should ask whether they have a legal search warrant. If they do, you should ask them to slide it under your door so you can review the search warrant before opening the door.
A legal search warrant has your correct name and address. It also bears the signature of a judge. Any warrant that has incorrect information or lacks a judge’s signature is not a legally valid one. Remember, you do not have to honor invalid search warrants.
Should you say anything?
If officers have a valid search warrant and enter your home, they might arrest you. It is important to remember your right to remain silent. Indeed, ICE officers can and will use anything you say against you, including any misrepresentations you make to them.
Ultimately, rather than trying to avoid arrest by claiming to be someone else, you are better off staying silent and requesting an attorney immediately.