Unlawful Activities Subject to Deportation


The following are the various grounds for deportation under U.S. law. An alien in the U.S. has the constitutional right to due process. An alien may challenge the deportation order either in a court of appeals or in a federal district court. It is crucial to consult attorneys immediately and file an appeal as soon as possible.

  • The person was inadmissible at the time of entry.
  • For more information regarding unlawful activities that make an alien inadmissible, please click here.

  • Failure to maintain nonimmigrant status and violation of the conditions of admission.
  • Example 1: Student Anne fails to maintain a full course of study as required for an F-1 student.

    Example 2: Student Ben has transferred to another school without obtaining a new I-20 from the second school and reporting to his first school.

    Example 3: H-1B worker Carl changed his work from Employer A to Employer B without filing a new H-1B petition or otherwise obtaining USCIS authorization.

    Example 4: H-1B worker Duane abandoned his work with Employer A and failed to file for a change in his nonimmigrant status.

    Example 5: Ernest, as a B-2 visitor for pleasure, works while in the U.S.

  • Marriage fraud
  • A person who entered the U.S. due to a marriage contracted less than 2 years prior to admission, and who later divorced or had the marriage annulled within 2 years after admission, unless the person can prove it was not a sham marriage, is inadmissible for re-entry into the U.S.

    A person who entered the U.S. with a K fiancée visa and failed to complete the marriage within 90 days of admission, is also inadmissible.

  • Failure to register and falsification of documents
  • A person who fails to notify the USCIS in writing of any change of address within 10 days from the date of such change is subject to deportation, unless the alien establishes that the failure was not willful.

  • Criminal grounds
  • All the criminal acts illustrated in the section "Unlawful Activities" that qualify one for inadmissibility are likewise grounds for deportation.

    For more information, please click here.

    • Aggravated felony
    • A person who is convicted of an aggravated felony at any time after admission is subject to deportation. This applies to lawful permanent residents after adjustment of status even if the person never left the U.S.

      Any crime of violence involving force or any other felony involving a risk that force be used, for which the imprisonment term is at least 1 year, is an aggravated felony. An offense that under a state law is a misdemeanor might be an aggravated felony under federal law.

    • High speed flight from an immigration checkpoint is deportable.
    • Illicit trafficking of firearms or destructive devices in violation of federal, state, or local law is deportable.

(Updated 10/10/12 by NT)

For more information about Unlawful Activities and Their Impact on Immigration, please click on one of the following topics below: