Immigration Courts

Mexican Nationals and Detained Individuals Are Uniquely Disadvantaged in Immigration Court, Data Finds

Mexican Nationals and Detained Individuals Are Uniquely Disadvantaged in Immigration Court, Data Finds

Immigrants facing deportation fare far better if they have a competent attorney representing them. For example, studies show that for asylum seekers, representation generally doubles the likelihood of being granted asylum. For many, the ability to secure competent representation in immigration court is truly a matter of life and death.  Yet more than 80 percent […]

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DOJ Threatens to Turn Immigration Judges Into ‘Assembly-Line Workers’

DOJ Threatens to Turn Immigration Judges Into ‘Assembly-Line Workers’

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is reportedly intending to implement numerical quotas on Immigration Judges as a way of evaluating their performance. This move would undermine judicial independence, threaten the integrity of the immigration court system, and cause massive due process violations. As it currently stands, Immigration Judges are not rated based on the number […]

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Attorney General Sessions Attacks Asylum Seekers and Calls for More Fast-Track Deportations

Attorney General Sessions Attacks Asylum Seekers and Calls for More Fast-Track Deportations

During a public appearance at the Department of Justice on Thursday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions called on Congress to curb due process for immigrants by making it more difficult for an individual to seek asylum and to increase fast-track deportations. In his speech, Sessions focused heavily on America’s long-standing system that provides asylum to those […]

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Supreme Court Likely to Decide Constitutionality of Immigration Detention Without Bond

Supreme Court Likely to Decide Constitutionality of Immigration Detention Without Bond

When the Supreme Court hears arguments in Jennings v. Rodriguez, the Justices will tackle a question eight of them considered in 2016: whether the Constitution allows the government to detain noncitizens for more than six months without ever giving them an opportunity for a bond hearing. Although the case was first argued in December 2016, last […]

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Three-Year-Old Immigrant Child Released After Two Years of Detention

Three-Year-Old Immigrant Child Released After Two Years of Detention

An immigration judge ordered the immediate release of a three-year-old immigrant child and his mother from a detention center in rural Pennsylvania on Monday, stating that it was one of the most sympathetic cases for release he had encountered in his career. The child’s release marks what will hopefully be a positive turn for immigrant […]

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Government Moves to Curb Non-Citizens’ Ability to Get More Time to Prepare for Hearings

Government Moves to Curb Non-Citizens’ Ability to Get More Time to Prepare for Hearings

In a move to reduce the number of times immigration judges reschedule immigration hearings, the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) recently issued guidance suggesting judges should change practices regarding “continuances.” A continuance, which only may be granted for “good cause,” is a critically important option for individuals who seek a level playing field in […]

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Data Shows Prosecutorial Discretion Grinds to a Halt in Immigration Courts

Data Shows Prosecutorial Discretion Grinds to a Halt in Immigration Courts

The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced last month that it now has hired 326 immigration judges, 53 more judges than July 2016, yet during that time the immigration court backlog has grown. According to new data released by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) the reason for this may be due to the fact that […]

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Court Rules That Immigration Authorities May Not Deny Bond Hearings to Children

Court Rules That Immigration Authorities May Not Deny Bond Hearings to Children

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals delivered a strong rebuke to the government’s years-long effort to strip detained immigrant children of the right to a bond hearing in immigration court. The 3-0 decision, authored by Judge Reinhardt on Wednesday, came in a case involving the 1997 Flores settlement which requires the government to comply with […]

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Why Are the Immigration Courts So Backlogged? Government Findings May Surprise You

Why Are the Immigration Courts So Backlogged? Government Findings May Surprise You

Anyone familiar with the immigration system knows that the immigration courts have an enormous backlog which has persisted—and grown—for more than a decade. As of April 2017, the immigration court backlog topped 585,930 cases, more than double the pending cases in fiscal year (FY) 2006 (212,000). The immigration court backlog means that many people wait […]

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Federal Court Blocks DOJ’s Attempt to Restrict Access to Legal Assistance

Federal Court Blocks DOJ’s Attempt to Restrict Access to Legal Assistance

On Wednesday, a federal court in Seattle issued a nationwide temporary restraining order allowing nonprofits to continue to provide limited legal assistance to immigrants without being forced to formally represent them in immigration court. The order was issued in a lawsuit brought by the Northwest Immigrants Right Project (NWIRP) after it received a “cease and […]

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