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Immigration Officer Career

Career Description

An Immigration Officer is the main point of contact for the US Citizenship and Immigration Service on any national security and public-safety issue. They also act as a liaison between USCIS, law enforcement,  and intelligence agencies to enhance local, regional, and national policies and procedures relative to the detection and pursuit of immigration benefit fraud.

Common Work Tasks

  • Identify and pursue immigration benefit fraud
  • Analyze local, regional, and national policies and procedures related to immigration benefit fraud
  • Conduct interviews and investigations regarding potential fraud
  • Prepare reports based on analyses that articulate findings and propose future recommendations
  • Ensure immigration legislation is enforced
  • Detect and apprehend those that have breached the border and remove them
  • Pursue those in breach of Immigration and criminal laws

Other Job Titles

Immigration Officers are also known by other titles,  including:

  • CIA Agent
  • Law Enforcement Officer
  • Customs Officer
  • Information Analyst

Education,  Training, and Experience

Education and Training
Immigration officers must have either a bachelor’s degree or related work experience or a combination of the two. Fluency in a foreign language is also beneficial. Immigration officers undergo extensive training at the USCIS training centers in Dallas,  Texas and Lees Summit, Missouri.

  Immigration officers need the ability to exercise sound judgment and discretion, research and analyze legal information in order to apply appropriate laws and procedures, and good communications skills.

Other Qualifications
Candidates must be U.S. citizens, under the age of 35, and must meet rigorous physical and personal qualifications. Physical examinations for entrance into law enforcement often include tests of vision, hearing, strength, and agility.  Eligibility for appointment usually depends on performance in competitive written examinations and previous education and experience.

Candidates should enjoy working with people and meeting the public. Because personal characteristics such as honesty, sound judgment, integrity, and a sense of responsibility are especially important in law enforcement, candidates are interviewed by senior officers, and their character traits and backgrounds are investigated. In some agencies, candidates are interviewed by a psychiatrist or a psychologist or given a personality test. Most applicants are subjected to lie detector examinations or drug testing. Some agencies subject sworn personnel to random drug testing as a condition of continuing employment.


The median annual salary for Immigration Officers is $46,000. The top 10 percent earn more than $73,000, and the lowest 10 percent earn less than $25,000.  Median earnings in the industries employing the largest number of immigration officers are:

  • Federal Executive Branch - $46,974

Job Outlook

  • 2006-2016 Employment growth:  N/A
  • Number of new jobs created 2006-2016: N/A
  • Employment 2006 : N/A
  • Employment 2016:  N/A
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