Attorney at Law
FOR LAWYERS

What is deportability? 

Deportability refers to the legal status of a foreign national being subject to removal from the United States (note that the term "removal" has replaced "deportation" in much of the official U.S. immigration law terminology, and those terms are used interchangeably in this post). 

Key Takeaways 

  • Deportability can arise from various scenarios, such as a foreign national on a student visa dropping their studies, a green card holder committing an aggravated felony, or a foreign national working without authorization.
  • Individuals facing deportation have rights, including having a hearing before an immigration judge, legal representation, and the right to appeal.
  • Opting for voluntary departure can prevent the ten-year re-entry ban associated with official removal proceedings.

Deportability vs inadmissibility  

While inadmissibility and deportability are similar to the extent that they both deal with an individual's eligibility to enter or remain in the U.S., they differ in the stages and circumstances of enforcement. Whereas inadmissibility typically applies to individuals seeking entry into the U.S. (either as visitors or immigrants) and is determined at ports of entry, deportability concerns individuals already in the U.S. who may be subject to removal due to specific violations or changes in their immigration status. 

Grounds for Deportability 

The grounds for deportability encompass a wide variety of circumstances and conduct, including: 

  • Noncompliance with Visa Conditions: For example, a foreign national enters the U.S. legally on a student visa but becomes deportable after dropping out of their educational program.
  • Criminal Convictions: For example, a lawful permanent resident (i.e., a green card holder) commits an aggravated felony, which is a removable criminal offense.
  • Unauthorized Employment: For example, a foreign national arriving in the U.S. on a visa not related to employment starts working illegally without obtaining the necessary work authorization.
  • Fraudulent Activity or Misrepresentation: For example, a foreign national provides false information or omits critical details on their visa application or to immigration officials.
  • Failure to Register: For example, an asylum seeker or refugee fails to attend mandatory check-in appointments with immigration authorities.

Another critical distinction between inadmissibility and deportability involves one's rights to due process. Generally speaking, due process refers to the fundamental legal principle that individuals are entitled to fair and impartial treatment under the law. 

Because inadmissibility determinations occur before an individual establishes a legal presence in the U.S., they are afforded few due process protections. Conversely, deportation proceedings involve individuals who already have established a presence in the U.S., entitling them to more due process protections—even if they entered the U.S. and remain there illegally. 

The scope and extent of these protections vary based on several factors, including the specific grounds for their deportability, the individual's immigration history, and the extent of their established relationships in the U.S. That said, the scope of due process rights for those facing removal may include:

  • A hearing before an immigration judge.
  • The right to be represented by an attorney.
  • The right to present evidence in their defense.
  • The right to appeal an adverse decision to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA)
  • In some cases, the right to further appeals within the federal court system.

The Benefits of Voluntary Departure 

Choosing to leave the U.S. voluntarily instead of undergoing official removal proceedings can be greatly beneficial, especially because it avoids the ten-year ban on re-entering the U.S. that automatically applies to removed individuals. Voluntary departure in the U.S. can be contingent on specific eligibility requirements, such as having a clean criminal record, exhibiting good moral character, and demonstrating their financial capability to cover their travel expenses (in fact, in some cases, they may be required to post a bond). 

Furthermore, it’s better to apply for voluntary departure as early as possible in the removal proceedings, as early requests are more likely to be granted, and late requests might be granted but with stricter conditions attached.

Ask a Lawyer

Ask your own question and get advice from expert attorneys
Ask Question

Featured Deportation Law Lawyers

Immigration Law Office of Karina Arzumanova, P.A.

google-logo
13 years in practice
Asylum, Citizenship, Deportation Law, Family Visa, Green Cards
View Profile

360 Immigration Law Group

google-logo
12 years in practice
Asylum, Citizenship, Deportation Law, Family Visa, Green Cards
View Profile

Law Offices of Sabrina Li, P.C.

google-logo
12 years in practice
Asylum, Citizenship, Deportation Law, Family Visa, Green Cards
View Profile

J Nichols Law

google-logo
1 years in practice
Estate Planning, Trust & Estate
View Profile

England Injury Law

google-logo
5 years in practice
Auto Accidents, Bicycle Accidents, Motorcycle Accidents, Personal Injury, Truck Accidents
View Profile

Contact AttorneyAtLaw.com

Are you looking for an attorney? Do you have questions about a legal case you are facing? Contact us now and we will put you in touch with a lawyer for free.
Attorney At Law is changing how clients connect with lawyers. By providing an innovative platform to lawyers who want to expand their practice’s reach, AAL is bringing law practices into the future.
6142 Innovation Way
Carlsbad, California 92009
Some of the content of this website may be considered attorney advertising under the rules of certain jurisdictions. The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.
crossmenuchevron-upchevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram