Immigration and Customs Inspectors

What they do:

Investigate and inspect persons, common carriers, goods, and merchandise, arriving in or departing from the United States or between states to detect violations of immigration and customs laws and regulations.

On the job, you would:

  • Examine immigration applications, visas, and passports and interview persons to determine eligibility for admission, residence, and travel in the U.S.
  • Detain persons found to be in violation of customs or immigration laws and arrange for legal action, such as deportation.
  • Locate and seize contraband, undeclared merchandise, and vehicles, aircraft, or boats that contain such merchandise.
  • Interpret and explain laws and regulations to travelers, prospective immigrants, shippers, and manufacturers.
  • Inspect cargo, baggage, and personal articles entering or leaving U.S. for compliance with revenue laws and U.S. customs regulations.
  • Record and report job-related activities, findings, transactions, violations, discrepancies, and decisions.
  • Institute civil and criminal prosecutions and cooperate with other law enforcement agencies in the investigation and prosecution of those in violation of immigration or customs laws.
  • Testify regarding decisions at immigration appeals or in federal court.
  • Determine duty and taxes to be paid on goods.
  • Collect samples of merchandise for examination, appraisal, or testing.

Knowledge

  • Public Safety and Security
  • Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Law and Government
  • Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • English Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Foreign Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
  • Psychology
  • Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Clerical
  • Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • Geography
  • Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

Skills

  • Active Listening
  • Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking
  • Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking
  • Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Writing
  • Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Monitoring
  • Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Coordination
  • Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Negotiation
  • Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

Abilities

  • Oral Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension
  • The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Inductive Reasoning
  • The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Near Vision
  • The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Speech Clarity
  • The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Written Comprehension
  • The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Deductive Reasoning
  • The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Speech Recognition
  • The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

Work Activities

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Getting Information
  • Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
  • Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
  • Processing Information
  • Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Interests

  • Conventional
  • Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
  • First Interest High-Point
  • Primary-Rank Descriptiveness
  • Enterprising
  • Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • Second Interest High-Point
  • Secondary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness
  • Realistic
  • Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Social
  • Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
  • Investigative
  • Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Artistic
  • Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
  • Third Interest High-Point
  • Tertiary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness

Work Styles

  • Integrity
  • Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Self Control
  • Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Dependability
  • Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Stress Tolerance
  • Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Attention to Detail
  • Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Cooperation
  • Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility
  • Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Initiative
  • Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Independence
  • Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.