Immigration Courts

While updating our immigration system has been a slow process, over the last decade, there have been efforts to pass comprehensive immigration reform legislation and the DREAM Act. Other reform efforts include executive actions such as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA). Learn more about the ways America can upgrade its immigration system.

Recent Features

All Immigration Courts Content

January 12, 2017

Senator Jeff Sessions, who has been nominated to be Attorney General by President-elect Donald Trump, endured a 10-and-a-half-hour confirmation hearing this week where he answered questions on a...

December 20, 2016

Entire jurisdictions in the United States have become so hostile to asylum seekers and their representatives that the U.S. government, and its immigration court system, is failing to deliver on...

November 18, 2016
Senator Sessions has led the fight against immigration reform at every turn during his 20 years in the Senate.
November 16, 2016

For more than a decade, the immigration court system has struggled with an enormous backlog. The latest figures from  (TRAC) record the backlog at an all-time high of 521,676 as of the end of...

September 29, 2016

In 2014, a legal challenge was mounted against the federal government for its failure to provide legal representation to indigent children in deportation proceedings. The case, F.L.B.. v. Lynch...

September 28, 2016

Nationally, only 37 percent of all immigrants had legal representation, and only 14 percent of immigrants in detention had a lawyer. In a paper issued today, Access to Counsel in Immigration Court...

August 9, 2016

This summer, the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) in its lawsuit seeking the disclosure of unredacted versions of...

July 27, 2016

The latest figures show that the number of cases pending in immigration court continue to grow. According to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), there were 496,704 cases in the...

July 20, 2016

For more than 10 years, the federal government has operated a program in federal courts along the Southwest border targeting unauthorized border crossers for criminal prosecution. The program,...

July 6, 2016

Immigration law imposes a one-year deadline, beginning upon arrival in the United States, within which an asylum seeker must apply for asylum. With very limited exceptions, an individual who...

September 11, 2018

Rather than encourage the new class of 44 immigration judges to be fair and impartial adjudicators in his Monday morning speech, Attorney General Jeff Sessions advocated for a deeply flawed...

September 10, 2018
This Practice Advisory provides a practitioner-focused overview of motions to continue a case in removal proceedings, from the basics of making the motion to advanced issues of jurisdictional bars to appellate review of continuances.
September 7, 2018

The Department of Justice (DOJ) released “Phase I” of its review of the federally-funded Legal Orientation Program (LOP) this week. The review came after Attorney General Jeff Sessions attempted...

September 6, 2018
The Legal Orientation Program (LOP) offers legal education, as well as referrals for free and low-cost legal counsel, to noncitizens in immigration detention.
This case challenges the punitive practice of keeping asylum seekers in custody for weeks or months without access to credible fear interviews or bond hearings and the lack of basic procedural protections—like hearing transcripts and written decisions—in bond hearings, as well as whether asylum seekers must bear the burden of proof in bond proceedings.
August 21, 2018

Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a decision on continuances in immigration court that both recognized their importance and decried their alleged overuse.  This decision will have widespread...

August 17, 2018

The National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIJ), the union that represents the nation’s immigration judges, is challenging the government’s decision to remove an immigration judge from a...

August 16, 2018
This report presents findings from the first empirical analysis of asylum adjudication in family detention. Drawing on government data from over 18,000 immigration court proceedings initiated between...
August 8, 2018

Recently released internal communications at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reveal a plan to restart the deportation cases of hundreds of thousands of people whose cases are currently...

August 7, 2018

The Trump administration is working hard to undermine the asylum system through additional and unnecessary barriers, making it more difficult for those seeking refuge in the United States to be...

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