My uncle has been deported.
March 23, 2009 7:44 PM   Subscribe

My Greek uncle has been deported from the US for overstaying his visa last year by one month. What do I do?

My Greek uncle who is a recluse has been deported. Last year he overstayed his visa by one month. He reentered the US with no problems in November. On Wednesday he joined us on a vacation to the Bahamas. Tonight upon arriving back into the US he was taken by customs and detained. We flew back via a different airport due to flight overbookings. According to my Greek aunt, he is to be deported to Greece. She also says she cannot get in contact with him and nobody in the Miami airport will talk to her. What do we do? Is he even going to be deported, or just lost in the detaining cells. Also complicating the situation is his assortment of medical ailments, which all need drugs that he does not have (including a recent cataract operation, depression, and others). Also told to us by her is that supposedly the airport workers are taunting my uncle when he mentioned where he was going to (East Hampton, NY).
Hive mind, I need your help desperately.
posted by ooklala to Travel & Transportation (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Well, there's really nothing you can do as far as stopping the removal. Here's a list of the ICE field offices so you can try and track him down:
posted by lockestockbarrel at 8:14 PM on March 23, 2009

If you think it's a medical emergency, and want to call in the big guns, contact your congressman's office and get them to help trace him down.

Be polite, not irate.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:18 PM on March 23, 2009

Response by poster: Turns out he has his drugs, so thats taken care of. Will he ever be allowed back into the US?
posted by ooklala at 8:27 PM on March 23, 2009

Well, I'd talk to an immigration attorney for that -- use Martindale-Hubbel for that. The INA is really complex and what will happen to your uncle depends on a lot of factors. For example, if he was a LPR for five years and continuously present for 7 (in other words, not gone from the US for longer than a couple months), then an immigration judge could grant him cancellation of removal. But this turns on how a judge views each trip your uncle took departing the US. You can see how this turns on a close examination of many details.

I would encourage your family to call an immigration attorney and explore your uncle's options. He won't be shipped back overnight; he'll go through a removal proceeding. Tell your aunt to tell your uncle not to sign any "stipulation papers" or anything until he talks to an immigration attorney. Good luck!
posted by lockestockbarrel at 8:41 PM on March 23, 2009

An overstay of more than 180 days bars individuals from re-entering the U.S. for a 3 years. An overstay of more than one year bars individuals for a period of 10 years.
posted by clanger at 8:48 PM on March 23, 2009

Is your aunt his wife or his sister?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:55 PM on March 23, 2009

Response by poster: His wife, acording to her, he will be deported tomorrow–no matter what. This seems to be contrary to the process of trials and such that is being discribed. Once he has been kicked out to Greece, we should contact a lawyer? We have contacted the deportation office, and nobody seems to know anything.
posted by ooklala at 8:59 PM on March 23, 2009

I am not an immigration lawyer, but I don't think that, technically, your uncle is going to be deported. If he was stopped at immigration when returning to the U.S. from a foreign country, then he is actually being denied entry to the U.S. -- presumably since he does not have a valid visa or is ineligible for the visa waiver program (if that applies to Greece in the first place) due to his previous overstay. That would explain why he is expected to depart so quickly.
posted by Dolukhanova at 9:51 PM on March 23, 2009

Oh oh oh, I missed that when reading your question. Dolukhanova is right about being denied entry, so he wouldn't get removal proceedings. At that point a lawyer won't be much help, but you can always consult with one for free to see what chances your uncle has. Back in the day there used to be two different names for whether you were kicked out or not let in, but now it's all called removal. In any event, yeah, he was denied entry because of his overstay -- that makes him inadmissible. Try again in three years.
posted by lockestockbarrel at 9:58 PM on March 23, 2009

The denial of entry vs. deportation distinction is critical. The powers of the government to refuse entry to non-citizens is exceptionally broad. Courts allow the government to refuse entry on grounds -- such as expressing unpopular political beliefs -- that would be outlandishly illegal as a basis for deportation.
posted by MattD at 6:46 AM on March 24, 2009

Response by poster: As nobody in the immigration service is telling us anything and we have not had contact with him, how can we make the distinction? Why did the NYC airport not get him when he arrived here in november, when the Miami airport just got him? We are going to call my congressman, and we are trying to get hold of somebody we know who is rather high up in Homeland Security.
posted by ooklala at 7:04 AM on March 24, 2009

Have you gotten the Greek embassy/consulate/whatever involved? The embassy website has contact info for the embassy and all the local consulates.
posted by Sidhedevil at 7:12 AM on March 24, 2009

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