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I'm a legal visa holder and I was wondering what the process is if for some odd reason (I have done nothing wrong) I have been deported and I am asked to go back. My questions are:

1> Do I need to go back to my home country, the country of my citizenship or can I go to another country where I will be allowed with my passport?

2> Do I need to fly back immediately or would I be able to fly the next day? (I am guessing there will be some kind of a detention cell) The reason I ask this is because if I already did a 24 hour trip (India to USA or China to USA for ex) then I wouldn't want to hop onto another 24 hour trip immediately.


Update: To Nate's point, i'm asking about denying entry and not deportation. I have not committed a crime or overstayed my visa.


Update: Thanks everyone for sharing the knowledge. What I really wanted to find out was, if i'm ever in that situation, do I even have the rights to rest a little bit, get some sleep and then take the immediate next flight? Or just take a flight to somewhere in the Carribean islands which is a few hours away instead of flying back 24 hours across the world? Forcing me to do the latter has to be some kind of a human rights violation.

  • In advance of a proper answer here is a recent case where this happened that illustrates the process. themountainmail.com/free_content/… – ohwilleke Aug 8 '17 at 19:36
  • There's quite a lot of information about this topic over at Travel. – phoog Aug 8 '17 at 22:24
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    Please keep in mind that there is a distinction between being deported and being refused entry. The former happens when you are already in the US and have commited a crime or immigration violation; you have a right to due process in that case. The latter happens at the port of entry when you are trying to enter the US, and can be done at the discretion of the immigration officer; you don't have the same due process rights in that case. Which of the two are you really asking about? – Nate Eldredge Aug 8 '17 at 22:33
  • Added to my answer. I would not hang my hat on the notion of a long plane flight being a human rights violation. – A.fm. Aug 9 '17 at 17:13
  • No notable changes in the law since the August 11 entry was made ;) – A.fm. Sep 10 '17 at 15:01
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The deporting country doesn't care what you want. You have not met the conditions to be allowed in their territory, and you'll be removed as soon as possible.

In the United States as with most countries, this means being put in the next flight back to the foreign airport you came from, via the same airline where possible. If there is a significant waiting time, they will place you in detention - either with dedicated secure environments at or near the airport, or in some cases at a hotel with an escort.

They will return you to the country you came from, or the country of your citizenship, whichever is easier to determine and arrange. They don't have the time or resources to get you another visa, so they'll send you somewhere they know for sure must accept your return.

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This is incorrect. You would only be potentially "put on the next flight back" if you had never entered the US and had been discovered as a non-citizen with no other right to enter the country at the immigration check at the airport.

Once you are in the US, you have a right to a hearing, an attorney, and certain other rights under the Constitution.

For those who had not entered the US and were discovered prior to entry, if they have a legitimate fear of persecution if forced to return home, they will not be immediately removed either. Rather, their asylum case will be heard.

Addendum to address author's further inquiry:

If you are denied entry at the border, they may attempt to put you "on the next flight back." If they were successful in that attempt, it is unlikely you would have any claim with respect to your comfort. Colloquially speaking, that's a first world problem. There are people being sent straight back out of the country who just traveled across South and Central America and Mexico, so your flight is not on anybody's mind.

That said, your right is to be heard before an immigration proceeding. You must request an exclusion hearing for yourself. It is not lawful for them to put you in detention overnight, either, if the hearing cannot be held until the next day. At that point, your first order of business would be locating a top-notch US immigration attorney.

When being sent back, the government usually works to get the airline you came in on to fly you out. Your destination is the departure country you arrived from. This may become complicated if you had a single-entry visa in a third country that is not your home and that your visa is no longer valid in.

  • The post is discussing denial of entry where due process rights are much more minimal. – ohwilleke Aug 9 '17 at 5:14
  • I addressed denial of entry in paragraph one and three. – A.fm. Aug 9 '17 at 5:18
  • You are confusing customs with immigration. It's the same service nowadays, but in airports there are typically separate checkpoints with differently-trained officers. – phoog Aug 9 '17 at 19:22
  • Please check again and then indicate where there is a confusion and, if there is, the nature of such confusion. In fact, my answer does not make reference to the relevant immigration or customs agencies, but the agency called Immigration and Customs Enforcement is widely known to handle immigration enforcement and US Citizenship and Immigration Services is the agency in charge of removal proceedings. Nothing in my answer confuses either of those entities. – A.fm. Aug 9 '17 at 19:34
  • You wrote "customs check" when you should have written "immigration check." These officers work for CBP (neither ICE nor USCIS). The customs check is concerned with the goods travelers being with them, and is conducted after the traveler has been admitted by the immigration inspector – phoog Aug 10 '17 at 21:57

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