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Trump Plan Fails to Cut Immigration Court Backlog, as Caseload Soars More than 26 Percent

The Los Angeles Times reports that the administration’s controversial plan to shrink the ballooning backlog of immigration cases by pushing judges to hear more cases has failed

DHS Releases Information on Returning Certain Foreign Nationals to Mexico During Immigration Proceedings

DHS released information about the Migrant Protection Protocols it has begun implementing at the U.S.-Mexico border, whereby certain foreign nationals entering from Mexico may be returned to wait outside the United States for the duration of their immigration proceedings

Government Shutdown Closes Immigration Courts Adding to Record-High 800,000 Case Backlog

CBS News reports that the partial federal government shutdown has closed most immigration courts. AILA Associate Director of Government Relations Kate Voigt said, “Holding the government hostage for a border wall isn’t going to do anything to make the country safer, but it will make the immigration courts worse.” The Washington PostEditorial Board noted the irony of “a president who conjures migrant no-shows in courts manag[ing] to close the courts entirely.

EOIR Releases Two Memos Related to Case Priorities and Performance Measures

EOIR supplemented its January 17, 2018, memo, Case Priorities and Immigration Court Performance Measures by announcing the tracking and expedition of “family unit” cases at ten immigration court locations. EOIR further supplemented the January memo by heightening the bar for overcoming a 180-day adjudication window, stating that for an immigration judge to grant a continuance resulting in an asylum case taking longer than 180 days to adjudicate, a respondent must satisfy the good-cause standard and show exceptional circumstances.

A Defendant Shows Up in Immigration Court by Himself. He’s 6.

Wilder Maldonado, who was separated from his father at the border and is facing immigration proceedings alone. ICYMI, the LA Times Published Published an op-ed earlier this week by a former DOJ employee about why he resigned from his position at the Los Angeles immigration court. Gianfranco de Girolamo writes, “I couldn’t stand by, or be complicit in, a mean-spirited and unscrupulous campaign to undermine the everyday work of the Justice Department and the judges who serve in our immigration courts — a campaign that hurts many of my fellow immigrants in the process

Attorney General Sessions continues to take away due process of Immigrants

Matter of L‑A‑B‑R‑, which outlined when immigration judges (IJs) may grant continuances; Matter of Castro‑Tum, which limited IJs authority toadministratively close a case; and Matter of A‑B‑, which narrowed the criteria for demonstrating membership in a particular social group.

Sessions is trying to turn the Immigration Courts into puppet institutions that just deport people without regard to real representation.

Closing an Immigration Case

Matter of W-Y-U-, 27 I&N Dec. 17 (BIA 2017)
(1) The primary consideration for an Immigration Judge in evaluating whether to administratively close or recalendar proceedings is whether the party opposing administrative closure has provided a persuasive reason for the case to proceed and be resolved on the merits. Matter of Avetisyan, 25 I&N Dec. 688 (BIA 2012), clarified.
(2) In considering administrative closure, an Immigration Judge cannot review whether an alien falls within the enforcement priorities of the Department of Homeland Security, which has exclusive jurisdiction over matters of prosecutorial discretion.

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