Date AnnouncedApril 6, 2018
Attorney General Sessions issues a memo establishing a new "zero tolerance policy" for illegal entry along the Southwest border. Under the policy, US Attorneys Offices will prosecute all offenses under section 1325(a) referred to DOJ by DHS. [ID #324]
See Biden administration action below.View Policy Document
Effective Date of ChangeApril 6, 2018
Subsequent ActionJune 15, 2018
Zero-tolerance continues to lead to significant prosecutions of individuals crossing the border.DHS Fact Sheet: Zero Tolerance Immigration Prosecutions - Families
Subsequent ActionJune 18, 2018
In recent days, we have seen reporters, Members of Congress, and other groups mislead the public on the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) zero-tolerance policy. Federal law enforcement officers have sworn duties to enforce the laws that Congress passes. Repeating intentionally untrue and unsubstantiated statements about DHS agents, officers, and procedures is irresponsible and deeply disrespectful to the men and women who risk their lives every day to secure our border and enforce our laws.DHS "Myths vs. Facts"
Subsequent ActionMarch 28, 2019
On March 28, 2019, the Trump administration announced a decision to curtail a key component of its "zero tolerance" immigration policy. Along a busy stretch of West Texas, ICE and CBP will no longer charge first-time illegal border crossers with a crime. The change does not affect any other enforcement area.Trump Administration Curtailment of Zero Tolerance
Biden Administration ActionJanuary 26, 2021
This Biden administration policy revokes the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.
On Jan. 26, 2021, Acting Attorney General Monty Wilkinson issued a memo rescinding the zero tolerance policy.2021.01.26 Rescinding the Zero-Tolerance Policy for Offenses Under 8 U.S.C. § 1325(a)
Since 2005, Operation Streamline sought to facilitate prosecution of individuals who had crossed the border without authorization.DHS OIG - Operation Streamline: Measuring Its Effect on Illegal Border Crossing
- DHS Fact Sheet: Zero Tolerance Immigration Prosecutions - Families
- DHS "Myths vs. Facts"
- Trump Administration Curtailment of Zero Tolerance
Biden Administration Action
New Policy Document
- Prior Policy Document
Subsequent Action Document
Biden Administration Action Document