Moving To A Different Country

For some families, they are in a situation where they simply must bring back their kids to their home country. 

However, it can be a bit difficult to connect with your parent/guardian once they are detained and then deported. Here are a few factors to consider:

  • There will not be much warning once your parent/guardian is detained, and it will be nearly impossible to contact them

    • You need to make sure you have already coordinate with your guardians what the plan is for reunification. Try to have your parents save up money for airplane tickets for you and your siblings, and make sure they give you information on where you will be traveling to, and how to contact your parent/guardian once they are deported.

  • They may be detained for a while await deportation

    • Even if your plan is to go and live with your parent/guardian in another country, there will be a period of time where you will be living with another guardian while your parent/current guardian is detained. You need to account for this and fill out the needed paperwork - see the 'How To Prepare' page.

  • Figure out who will be going with the children to the country

    • Depending on the age of the children, it may be possible for them to fly alone, or have the aid of a flight attendant (depending on the airline, many offer assistance to flyers under 13 years old who are unaccompanied). Make sure to coordinate that with your parent/guardian beforehand.

  • If you don't have dual citizenship, figure out what is needed to obtain citizenship in your parent/guardian's native country

    • If you travel to their country illegally, you may find yourself in the same situation as your parent/guardian now, and face deportation later. See what is required for becoming a citizen there.

  • You will need a passport

    • You should get a passport. If you were born in the US, you are a US citizen and are eligible to get a US passport - and if your parents are citizens of another country, you may have "dual citizenship," which means you are both a US citizen and also a citizen of the country where your parents are citizens. It is important to get/update your passports. If you relocate with your parents to another country, you will want to be able to come back to the US easily and that easiest if you have your US passport. Your US passport shows that you are a US citizen and are allowed back into the US.

    • Having your US passport (and also a passport for the other country, if you have dual citizenship) also is important if you end up staying in the US while your parents are deported - you will want to be able to visit your family in the country to which they are deported and to be able to travel back and forth to the US, if you still live here without your family.

    • How do you get a US passport? If your parents (or other guardian here in the US) are undocumented immigrants, they may be fearful about applying to get you a passport from the US government because they are afraid it will call attention to their own immigration status and will lead to them being detained and deported. However, US-born children of undocumented immigrants do have the right to get a passport and there are ways your parents or guardian can provide the required consent without being there in person when you apply for your passport. Further information is available at the "Show Parental Consent" section of the U.S. Department of State website available here.

  • Consider education

    • If you've grown up in the education system here in the United States, moving to a different country could really disrupt that. Many other places offer private education that is similar to the education you've received here in the U.S., but it's really expensive. Some places also have what's called international schools, which are specifically designed for people who travel and move around a lot- as every international school, worldwide, has the same general curriculum and education-however, these too are usually pretty expensive.

    • Yet, assuming you will have access to the internet, it is possible to supplement the education you will receive when you move, with one of the many online education options. They range in price, but normally can be purchased for low prices. While there are a range of these online schooling options, K12 is the most popular, and you can learn more here.

    • Along with K12, other educational resources are available more freely such as Learnamics.
      Learnamic lets parents and students easily search hundreds of sites for free and affordable learning resources, so they can supplement classroom learning or even homeschool. Learnamic is searchable by subject, grade level, format, and price, and most resources are completely free.

  • Fill out a Family Reunification Plan

    • This should be done with the whole family collaborating, and can be found on page 11 of this document.