Category: et al. v. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services

Report Shows that Majority of Deportations are Done Through Expedited Removal Proceedings

The American Immigration Council published a report today showing that the majority of removals are being conducted through expedited removal procedures like expedited removal, reinstatement of removal, and stipulated removal. These three mechanisms, in my opinion violate basic constitutional rights including Due Process.

The three mechanisms  allow immigration officials or an immigration judge to hasten an immigrant’s removal. The first two, expedited removal and reinstatement of removal, allow an immigration officer to remove an applicant for admission at a port of entry or if found within 100 miles from the border. The procedures does not take into account the person’s contacts in the United States. The only possible recourse for the immigrant is to exhibit fear of returning to his country, after which he will be subjected to a credible fear interview. Oftentimes, the immigrant is not informed of his right to counsel or know that he had been deported.

Lastly, an immigrant could also stipulate to be removed from the United States. The report speaks about the coercive nature of the interrogation process, which raises serious Due Process concerns. During these interviews, immigration officers usually use coercive tactics to “convince” the immigrant to stipulate to be removed. These individuals are usually in detention, which raises serious issues regarding the voluntary nature of these stipulations.

The removal system is plagued with injustice and the odds are usually stacked against individuals who do not know the system and usually do not speak English.  While some might believe that these expedited removal proceedings might be the right procedures to deport people who have no right to be in the United States in the first place, they are, in my view, illegal and a slap in the face of our judicial system. America could simply do better.

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Judge Approves Asylum Clock Class Action Suit

Last week, a federal judge approved a settlement agreement in a law suit challenging EOIR and USCIS procedures regarding the asylum clock. The lawsuit challenged the procedures used by the two governmental agencies since, among other things, they did not give notice that the asylum clock was stopped. Under the law and  the regulations, the applicant could become eligible to receive an employment authorization document after 180 days had passed from the date of his application. However, such clock will stop, and the applicant will become ineligible for the “work permit” if he causes any delay in his case.  The settlement  gives guidelines to both USCIS and EOIR regarding notice. The new procedures make things like giving notice and synchronization of  the agencies’ procedures mandatory. 
The case name is B.H., et al. v. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, et al. For a complete copy of the settlement agreement visit this link. I welcome this new policy. I have represented several asylum applicants that had to accept the “first available date” under the old policy even though they were truly not ready for their individual hearings. This new policy will ensure that there is some fairness, especially to one of the most vulnerable classes of immigrants.  Please comment or email me if you have any questions.