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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawUS Immigration LawAmerican Visa and Immigration Process: What is USCBP?

American Visa and Immigration Process: What is USCBP?

Transcript of the above video:

In this video, we're going to be discussing something that I've discussed in other videos sort of on a tertiary basis and that is US Customs and Border Protection also known as U.S. CBP. We've talked about U.S. CBP in the context of various immigration concerns also with respect to various new policies with respect to things like crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin and I figured it was probably warranted to go ahead and just do a video where I explain what USCBP actually is.

USCBP is U.S. Customs and Border Protection. These are the folks you will see at the airport upon arrival in the United States who are going to go ahead and stamp you into the United States. They actually lawfully admit aliens and Americans into the United States of America. It should be noted that we're not talking about TSA. We are talking about U.S. CBP. It's an entirely different agency.

Now something to keep in mind with respect to USCBP is they are under the same umbrella under Department of Homeland Security, it's a USCIS or U.S. ICE and USCBP has a markedly different function than either of those two groups. And it should be noted that USCBP is primarily again tasked with admitting foreign nationals in in the country. Those foreign nationals can be placed into what's called expedited removal proceedings by USCBP, they can be deported by USCBP, they can be asked if they want to voluntarily depart the United States by CBP or they can be admitted by USCBP.

It should be noted that simple issuance of a Beaches is not guaranteed entrance to the United States. The US Customs and Border Protection in many ways is sort of the last line of defense, for lack of a better term, with respect to admitting foreign nationals this sort of the last bite of the apple to keep somebody who may be a problem out. And for that reason, USCBP takes their job very seriously and are not an agency to really take lightly, I should say. When I've personally been detained and detained is not the right word but been asked to step in for a secondary inspection when coming back from here in Thailand to the United States, I think Customs and Border Protection just sort of viewed me into somewhat anomalous individual traveling and they went ahead and wanted to ask me some further questions.

It should be noted that under various Supreme Court decisions, the airports especially when one's arriving from abroad are viewed in a very much of a different legal light as far as jurisprudence as compared to say, the actual United States property. In essence, the Supreme Court had sort of carved out this gray area where the Constitution does not yet fully apply as it would once one's been passed through and admitted into the United States. Just exactly where the lines are with respect to this sort of gray zone is a little bit amorphous, it's a little bit difficult to say. But that being said, it's fairly clear that once admitted a lot of the rights of the Constitution and the privileges associated therewith are going to go ahead and attach. But again that can be that's something of a gray area frankly.

USCBP again because they have this admission function. They also have kind of an adjudicatory function also because as I said, they are something of sort of the last line of defense with respect to those wanting to get into the United States. In most cases immigrant visa holders, fiancee visa holders, work visa holders, these kinds of folks are not going to really have a lot of or see a lot of trouble with respect to USCBP. The one that I really see where folks are really sort of in a large volume at problems with CBP are those who are holding like tourist visas to the United States or have passports which allow visa exemption essentially visa waiver in the United States who spent significant periods of time in the U.S.

Basically, CBP starts to look at their physical presence because that can all be seen on CBP system when admitting someone in the United States. They basically look at these individuals and say "Wow, you're on a tourist visa but you spent the last nine out of 11 months in the U.S. and then you went ahead and you've left and now you're coming back and you're saying you're only going to be here a week." We don't know if we believe that. In some cases, sometimes those folks are admitted, other times they're heavily scrutinized and then admitted. Other times they're heavily scrutinized and told "We don't believe you anymore" and citing certain sections of the Immigration Nationality Act, they're asked if they would like to go ahead and voluntarily depart.

In some cases, those individuals can be placed in expedited removal proceedings and those proceedings can result in a ban of re-entry to the United States for five and possibly 10 years depending on the circumstances of the case at hand. So to conclude, USCBP although they're kind of a tail end of the overall process with respect to bringing especially a loved one in the United States, they are not an insignificant part of the process and in fact they are rather important part of the process.