How Do U.S. Officials Decide Who Gets Entry to USA?
How Do U.S. Officials Decide Who Gets Entry to USA?
If you are planning a trip to the United States of America, you might wonder how U.S. officials decide who gets access to the country. There are a number of factors that are considered when U.S. officials decide whether or not to grant someone entry into the United States. This article discusses factors that go into the decision-making process of who gets entry into the United States.
The procedures for entering the United States vary depending on the country that you are arriving from. For example, people from Canada, Bermuda, the Caribbean, and Mexico are part of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. Thus, they can enter the United States by showing an enhanced driver's license, a valid passport, a trusted Traveler Program card, or a U.S. passport card. If you are entering from one of those countries as a permanent resident of the United States, you only need to show your green card as opposed to your passport. This applies to travel by sea, land, or air travel for all countries in The Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative.
If you are not arriving from one of the countries that take part in the initiative, then you will absolutely be required to show a valid passport when you arrive in the United States. Also, some foreign nationals and permanent residents from other countries are required to obtain a US Visa. It is important to note that you must apply for a USA visa while you are in your home country because albeit for extreme or unpredictable circumstances, you will be turned away.
Aside from basic entry requirements, how do officials decide who obtains entry into the United States? Under the Trump Administration, there have been more obstacles to securing entry into the United States. For examples, there have been reports of foreign nationals being denied entry into the United States, even when they hold a valid visa, due to social media posts. This includes an aspiring Harvard freshman as well as others who were denied entry based on posts or messages that other individuals sent them. According to one article, visa applicants are now required to comply with new Trump-era mandates to disclose their social media handles. Thus, it is important to be vigilant about what you post on social media.
When deciding who gets entry to the United States, you should expect your documents to play an essential role in the process. It is important to be truthful and factual when completing US Visa application forms as well as other official documentation. For example, when completing the Customs Declaration Form, make sure everything is accurate. If any documentation appears to be questionable when you arrive at a U.S. airport, a Customs and Border Patrol official may require you to go through a secondary inspection, which involves more intensive questioning. If you are a green card holder, you are only required to answer questions related to your permanent residency and identity status. You can choose not to answer unrelated questions, although it may delay your entry. Any other foreign nationals without a green card should be more careful, as refusing to answer questions could lead to a delay or refusal of entry into the country.
Officials typically allow people to enter the United States when they comply with all rules and regulations. One easy way to boost your chances of being admitted is to make sure not to bring in prohibited items. Such items are as firearms, Cuban cigars, certain food items such as meat, and to comply with medication suggestions (bring only the amount needed in their original containers).
Sometimes people are denied entry to the USA because they did not fully understand or comply with the requirements of their visa. For example, some visas only allow for one entry to the US. Thus, if you are in the US and then go to Canada or Mexico and try to re-enter the United States, officials are obligated to deny your re-entry request. Yet, there are other times when even a valid visa will result in a denial of entry to the US.
Unfortunately, having a valid USA visa in hand does not guarantee you entry at the airport. If you submit travel documents that are conflicting or have an issue with your paperwork, you could be turned away. You could also be turned away if previous criminal history is discovered or if you are acting suspiciously. If you ever have had a visa and overstayed, this too could result in US officials denying your request for entry. If you have ever experienced a denied entry to the United States for any reason (missing paperwork, invalid passport, etc.) your chances of being rejected entry a second time are also increased. Additional criteria are considered when deciding who is admitted, such as whether the person has had terrorist ties and where they have travelled previously. Likewise, if you have ever worked illegally in the United States, you could be turned away at the border, even with valid paperwork. Some other common things that U.S. officials look for when deciding whether to admit someone is whether the person is healthy enough to enter the United States (e.g., has not transmittable diseases). Another is whether the person has enough funds to support themselves for the entire duration of their stay.