Who Can be Deported?

1. Any noncitizen: Any non-citizen can be deported as a result of a criminal conviction. This includes legal permanent residents (green card holders), asylees and refugees, people who have been granted withholding of removal or temporary protected status, people who are in the process of adjusting status, and people on student, business and other visas.

2. Undocumented people: Undocumented people are deportable whether or not they have a conviction. Any arrest or conviction will make them more likely to be discovered and targeted by the Department of Homeland Security. This includes people who "entered without inspection" (i.e. crossed the border), people who have overstayed visas, and "absconders" (people with old deportation orders, though they may not know it). Absconders can be deported without a hearing.

  • If you know your Alien Registration Number (A#) and want to know whether you have an old order of deportation, you can call 1-800-898-7180.  This is the hotline for the immigration court (EOIR).  If the hotline says you have a deportation/removal order, talk to a lawyer specializing in deportation before you goto the immigration office, leave the country, or try to adjust your status.

3. Can U.S. citizens be deported? U.S. citizens cannot be deported. However, the government can attempt to take away the citizenship of a naturalized citizen if they can show that his/her naturalization application was "fraudulent" or contained certain omissions or mistakes (for example, if a person failed to disclose an arrest or conviction). A person whose citizenship is stripped may again be vulnerable to deportation.