Deportation of a Spouse From Israel—What Can You Do About It?
Love is undoubtedly one of the most wonderful experiences in our world. The exciting feeling that you have found the person with whom you wish to share your life has no match. But what if a couple in which one of the partners is an Israeli citizen and the other is from a foreign country wishes to live together in Israel and the Israeli Ministry of Interior refuses to grant legal status to the foreign partner? How to avert the deportation of a spouse from Israel?
Also, a partner often invites their lover to visit in Israel and then the invited foreign citizen extends their visit illegally because they cannot tolerate the thought of a long separation. If the illegal stay is discovered, the foreign partner may be deported in an unpleasant procedure, to say the least, which may completely prevent their reentry into Israel for years to come.
So what can you do if your partner is deported from Israel? What procedure does this entail and what legal steps should you take? These questions are answered below.
Our law firm specializes in immigration to Israel and visitation in Israel. We have acted on behalf of many couples to find a legal way for them to preserve their love relationship. If your spouse is about to be deported from Israel and you need help, you are welcome to contact us and we will be happy to help you professionally and skillfully.
WHAT ARE THE STAGES OF DEPORTATION FROM ISRAEL?
The procedure of deportation from Israel consists of four stages, each of which requires a different course of action to counter the deportation. We will later elaborate on each stage, but first we will present a general review of the stages.
The first stage in deporting the foreign spouse from Israel is their arrest by the Israeli Immigration Police. It is important to understand that staying in Israel requires a stay visa, while foreign citizens from certain countries need to arrange a visa or an invitation from an Israeli citizen in advance to even enter the state. A tourist visa is valid for three months, so staying in Israel after that period without arranging a stay status is illegal. The Israeli Immigration Police will arrest the person who is staying illegally in the country after it finds out about the case.
The second stage of the deportation process is a border control examination. This examination may lead to complete expulsion from the State of Israel for a period of five to ten years. However, the border control supervisor may decide that the illegal stay originated in innocence or in a mistake.
The third stage in the deportation process is a hearing before the Detention Review Tribunal. This tribunal is responsible for examining the case of the illegal stayer and issuing a decision.
The last stage of the process is appealing the decision of the Detention Review Tribunal. It is important to appeal as soon as possible, before the foreign spouse is deported from the country. An interim order is often needed and must be requested to prevent the deportation.
It is important to note that, even after the deportation, the foreign spouse’s fate is not sealed forever. Especially if the spouse was in the process of legally arranging their stay in Israel and something went wrong along the way, it is still possible to reinvite them if the romantic relationship is intact. However, this is a much more complex process and requires proof of the sincerity of the relationship.
WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOUR SPOUSE IS ARRESTED BY THE IMMIGRATION POLICE?
As stated above, the first stage in the deportation process is the arrest of the illegal resident by the Immigration Police. During this stage, the foreign citizen’s personal belongings are taken from them and the only visitor allowed is a lawyer. Therefore, it is important to contact an immigration lawyer as soon as possible and sign a power of attorney that will allow the lawyer to be the arrested person’s legal representative. The sooner you appoint your legal representative, the greater your chance of reaching the desirable solution.
The arrested person may be released with the help of a certified lawyer on various bases, such as a medical condition, a mistake in the proceedings, or an error on the foreign citizen’s part that occurred in innocence. Of course, each case is unique, so it is important to consult with an experienced skilled lawyer who can specifically review the case and create a solid defense.
WHAT CAN YOU DO WHEN SUMMONED BEFORE THE BORDER CONTROL SUPERVISOR?
If the efforts to release the arrested foreign spouse have failed, the spouse will be summoned before the border control supervisor. Even then an immigration lawyer can help. There are cases in which it is possible to convince the supervisor that the foreign spouse was wrongfully arrested and should be released for humanitarian reasons.
If this fails, as well, the case will be referred to the Detention Review Tribunal for a final decision.
WHAT CAN YOU DO WHEN SUMMONED TO A HEARING BEFORE THE DETENTION REVIEW TRIBUNAL?
The Detention Review Tribunal is the body that examines each case of arrest due to illegally staying in Israel. It is important to understand that the case will not immediately be brought before the tribunal for a decision, and the State of Israel may wait up to 96 hours before bringing the illegal stayer before a judge.
During the hearing, the case of the arrested spouse will be thoroughly examined to decide whether they should be deported from Israel. The illegal stayer does not lose all their rights, which are anchored in the Israeli law. A skilled experienced lawyer will know what to do to defend the illegal stayer by bringing claims that are aligned with the law.
If the Detention Review Tribunal decides that the illegal stayer must be deported from Israel, this does not mean that their fate is sealed. They may still appeal to the appeals court.
APPEALING AGAINST THE DECISION OF THE DETENTION REVIEW TRIBUNAL
It is important to appeal to the appeals court as soon as possible, before the deportation is carried out. The appeal must be submitted no later than 21 days after receiving the deportation decision. Also, there are cases in which it is possible to issue an interim order that will temporarily suspend the deportation.
In the appeal process, the lawyer will present claims against the deportation of the illegal stayer. An appeal that is submitted with the help of a lawyer has high chances of leading to the desired result and preventing the deportation. It is important to choose a lawyer who is completely proficient in the immigration laws so that the case does not “fall through the cracks”.
Even if your spouse is deported from Israel, there are still other avenues that may be pursued to reinvite them. However, it is important to understand that, after being deported from the state, the process for returning your spouse becomes more complicated.
THINK BEFORE YOU LEAP—LEGALLY ARRANGING YOUR SPOUSE’S STAY
There are ways to legally arrange the stay in Israel of foreign romantic partners of Israeli citizens. To avoid deportation, you should arrange your partner’s stay in advance and thus avoid distress for all parties involved.
To be able to live together with your foreign spouse in Israel you must officially invite them and open a joint life file at the Ministry of Interior in accordance with the family unification regulations. This requires submitting official documents after authenticating them with an apostle stamp. It is important to mention this, because what we have described here applies to officially married couples, while the procedure for common-law couples is different.
DEPORTATION OF A SPOUSE FROM ISRAEL—DON’T DEAL WITH THIS ALONE
The experience of having a loved one deported is extremely painful. After being used to living together on a daily basis, you will suddenly experience uncertainty regarding the future. To increase your chances of successfully stopping the deportation process, it is important to seek the help of an immigration lawyer who is deeply familiar with the process. Although it is no simple process—if you receive help, you will increase your confidence until reaching the desired outcome.
Our law firm, which has branches in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, specializes in the Israeli immigration laws and in the procedures for arranging the legal status of foreign spouses of Israeli citizens. Whether your spouse is about to be deported or whether you wish to prevent the deportation in advance by arranging your spouse’s Israeli legal status, you are welcome to contact us and we will help you with any procedure that is required.