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Locating an Immigration Detainee

How Can I Find Someone Who Is Being Detained?

If you suspect your loved one or client is in U.S. immigration detention, there is an on-line detainee locator that you can use to locate a detainee who is currently in ICE custody, or who was released from ICE custody for any reason within the last 60 days.

There are two ways to search:

1.    If you know the detainee’s A-Number, ICE recommends you use the A-Number search. The A-Number must be exactly nine digits long. If the A-Number has fewer than nine digits, add zeros at the beginning. You are also required to select the detainee’s Country of Birth.

2.    You can also search by name. A detainee’s first and last names are required and must be an exact match (e.g., John Doe will not find Jon Doe or John Doe-Smith). You are also required to select the detainee’s Country of Birth. It is optional to enter the detainee’s Date of Birth to further narrow the search.

The Online Detainee Locator System cannot search for records of persons under the age of 18.

Where Are Detention Facilities Located?

Once you have confirmed your loved one or client is in U.S. immigration detention, family members and attorneys should contact one of the Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) field offices to find out more.  ICE personnel will provide the most current information available regarding the location of the detained individual.

A list of field office contact information can be found here. 


A list of detention facilities can be found at  http://www.ice.gov/detention-facilities/

My Domestic Partner Called Me from Detention and Said They Plan to Move Him to Texas.  Is There Anything I Can Do to Keep Him in New Jersey?

In January 2012, ICE issued new transfer guidance. Under this policy a detainee with “immediate family” should not be transferred out of the area.  “Immediate family” is defined as follows:  “Immediate family. This may include: mothers, fathers, step-parents, foster parents, brothers, sisters, stepbrothers, stepsisters, biological and adopted children, stepchildren, foster children, and spouses, including common-law marriage or civil unions and cohabitating domestic partnerships legally recognized by a state or other governmental entity (e.g. District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam).”

If you have a partner who is detained you should be sure to let his or her deportation officer know of your relationship.  If your partner fears that he or she will be transferred, you should contact Immigration Equality.