Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS) Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS), written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS)?

The federal agency that is responsible for implementing immigration laws. The responsibilities of the INS were transferred to the Department of Homeland Security in 2003.

History and Meaning of Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS)

The Immigration and Naturalization Service, commonly known as INS, was a federal agency in the United States responsible for enforcing and administering the country's immigration laws. Established in 1933, the INS handled all aspects of immigration, including the processing and granting of visas, conducting deportation proceedings, and naturalization of new citizens.

However, over the years, the agency faced criticism for its ineffective enforcement of immigration laws and the treatment of immigrants. In 2003, following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the responsibilities of INS were transferred to the newly created Department of Homeland Security, along with other federal agencies tasked with protecting the nation's borders and handling immigration.

Examples of Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS)

  1. The INS was responsible for the deportation of undocumented immigrants who had committed crimes in the United States.
  2. The INS conducted background checks and fingerprinting for individuals applying for naturalization.
  3. The INS granted visas to foreign nationals who met specific eligibility criteria, such as those with specialized skills or family members of U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
  4. The INS maintained records of all immigration-related activities, including applications, deportation proceedings, and naturalizations.
  5. The INS provided educational materials to help immigrants learn English and civics to pass the naturalization test.

Legal Terms Similar to Immigration And Naturalization Service (INS)

  1. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) - The department that currently handles all immigration-related matters and border control.
  2. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) - The federal agency responsible for protecting the country's borders and facilitating legal trade and travel.
  3. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) - A federal agency under DHS that enforces immigration laws and conducts investigations related to border security and customs.
  4. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) - The agency responsible for handling immigration-related matters, including granting visas, naturalization, and the legal status of immigrants in the United States.
  5. Bureau of Immigration Appeals (BIA) - The administrative appellate court for immigration cases, where individuals can appeal deportation orders and other immigration-related decisions.