As an illegal immigrant in the United States, you might run into a handful of obstacles. Many of the challenges lying ahead of you can also prove quite…well, challenging. From paying taxes to finding a job and not getting deported, things will pile up. Therefore, here are a few key points you should take note of, being an illegal alien in the US.
Educate Yourself — Read Books and Talk to Other Immigrants
Firstly, you should start by learning what being an illegal alien entails. There are many books that can help shed some light on various matters. For instance, if you want to pay taxes and document your stay in the US, you should get an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). The ITIN will, in turn, allow you to apply for a bank account and even obtain a driver’s license.
Secondly, you should talk to other immigrants who could share useful information. You will receive the best advice from people who know what being an illegal immigrant is like firsthand.
Know Your Rights
We can’t stress enough just how important knowing your rights is. You are a person, and you have rights. Legal or illegal citizen, you are a citizen of the United States — and that means you are protected by the Constitution and by the Bill of Rights.
For example, you can’t be subjected to unlawful searches, and you can’t be deprived of life, property, or liberty (without a trial). Of course, you also have the right to hire an attorney. You can also plead the Fifth Amendment and exert your right to remain silent when questioned.
Most importantly, you have a right to remain with your family. If one of your family members is a legal immigrant or a citizen, you get the option to stay with them.
Working as an Illegal Alien in the US
For illegal immigrants, work is arguably one of the most important things. Through work, they can provide for their families and pretty much make a living like any other legal citizen.
In order to work, immigrants need to show an ID and a Social Security number. Since the Social Security number can be an issue for illegal aliens, many provide another person’s SSN, or even a fake one. Employers are not required to verify its validity, so in most cases, nobody will know that it’s not your own number.
Applying for a Green Card
The process of becoming a legal citizen is lengthy, and not easy at all. For some individuals, it can take years. Make sure you read more about how to enter the United States or how to apply for US citizenship, so that you can get familiar with the steps.
Being an illegal alien in the US is not easy. From the daunting process of becoming a legal citizen to everyday life, you will be faced with a lot of challenges. However, as long as you know your rights, what to say and when to be quiet, you can fit in like any other citizen.