Title 42, a public health law that affected migrants attempting to enter the United States without documentation, is set to end on May 11. It will be replaced by its predecessor, Title 8. Those entering the United States and those who are awaiting a loved one’s entry will want to know what these changes mean for them.
What is Title 42?
Title 42 was a public health law, not an immigration law. However, it affected migrants attempting to enter the U.S.
Title 42 was implemented by the previous presidential administration in March 2020 during the global health emergency. Under Title 42, unauthorized migrants attempting to enter the country from the Mexico border would be sent back to Mexico or their country of origin within a matter of hours.
These migrants were not given the chance for making their case for why they should be allowed to enter the United States. Title 42 also suspended the right of some migrants to pursue asylum.
However, the national state of emergency that allowed for the implementation of Title 42 will cease on May 11. This means Title 42 will no longer be effective and the country will return to the laws regarding entry without documentation found under Title 8, which were in effect prior to the emergency.
What is Title 8?
Title 8 is part of the U.S. Code that covers immigration. Title 8 outlines when someone without documentation can enter or be expelled from the U.S. It includes laws on visa eligibility requirements, criminal penalties for unlawful entry and asylum laws.
Title 8 gives authorities from the Department of Homeland Security the ability to process those who arrive at the border without documentation, and send them back to their nation of origin if it is determined that they do not have a legal basis for entering the United States. If a migrant is expelled under Title 8, they cannot return for 5 to 20 years, depending on the reason for their removal.
Generally, migrants should try to secure the documentation necessary to legally enter the United States if possible. Sometimes they cannot do so, especially if they are seeking asylum. Since Title 8 could result in the denial of entry, it is good for undocumented migrants to understand their rights should they be expelled