What Documents Should Green Card Holders and US Citizens Always Have With Them?

In the news this week there have been stories of US Citizens being detained by ICE. Immigration attorney, Andres Mejer, explains in this video which documents you, as a US Citizen or green card holder, should have with you AT ALL TIMES to protect yourself.

Transcript (Transcripción):

Andres Mejer: What documents should you have with you. If you are a U.S. citizen or Green Card holder driver’s license or identity card copy of your Green Card, copy of your passport, you can have the original on you but make sure you have copies of these documents somewhere. Your social, your credit cards, your driver’s license, your passport, you should have copies of these documents. I don’t care if it’s on your phone. You know you just you take the photo and then you email them to you. You keep it in your e-mail or you save it in a safe place. It doesn’t matter as long as you have it and it’s accessible to you. I’ll give you an example. Yesterday  I was contacted by a friend of mine. His son was in Australia. Your son’s a U.S. citizen. He married and an Australian woman. They have three kids. They traveled to Australia for a wedding. His wife was a Green Card Holder never applied for citizenship. Yesterday they go to board the plane. She presents her passport and there is no Green Card. She doesn’t know what happened to it. She did have it. She doesn’t know where it went. Couldn’t find it. She was not allowed to board the plane. She didn’t have her alien ID number. She didn’t know her social. She had nothing and didn’t have copies of it either. So now her stay in Australia is going to be longer. She’s going to have to go file a document. You just have to get a travel documents. I have to go to an embassy or consulate in Australia. There are four. She’s gone. She’s actually going to go to Melbourne. But she you know she might be forced to travel to Sydney or somewhere else because she did not have documentation that she needed. Now has she had a copy of the Green Card. Chances are they would have allowed her to board. She would have reached out to DHS or customs border patrol. They could have at least with that information they could look her up and determine. Yes, you are a Green Cardholder. Don’t let it happen to you. Now what happens if you’re not in the US legally. Meaning you’re undocumented you overstayed Are you illegal. Don’t carry your passport with you. I don’t care whether you’re from Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Nicaragua. So it doesn’t matter where if you’re now undocumented in the United States and you present your passport ICE will then know without a shred of doubt that you’re illegally in the United States you’ve either overstayed your visa or you never had a visa, to begin with. So don’t take your passport with you. Ideally, take your driver’s license for whether from your country or from the U.S. I don’t care if it’s expired, something with your photo and your information, obviously be better not to be expired. There are problems with it and I would not have given this advice three years ago. But today and the Trump administration if they know you’re an immigrant, if they know you’re undocumented, you will be detained. Hundred percent of the time that was not the case under Obama. Now you should have your red card. It’s in Spanish and it’s in English. It gives you all the rights in case you get pulled over. Has our number you call you you call us and you just tell the officer I will not answer any questions without my attorney present. That should stop the investigation. It should prevent people from getting volunteering information that results in your detention.