Immigration Court, Appeals, and Federal Litigation
If you or a member of your family has been scheduled for a deportation or removal hearing before an Immigration Judge, your attorney will need to understand the most effective strategies to successfully fight removal. We understand that many immigrants to the United States don’t have an option to return to their home country. We make sure that every piece of evidence and legal strategy is part of your removal defense. Appeals to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and federal courts are sometimes necessary for individuals to obtain relief.
Immigration Court (EOIR)
Deportation and removal hearings take place before an immigration judge in U.S. Immigration Court. In Denver, there are currently six immigration judges. There is a large immigration jail in the Denver area known as the GEO Detention Center and two of the judges work full time handling bond cases and deportation cases of detained individuals at GEO. There is also an immigration court located in downtown Denver where four judges preside over the immigration cases of non-detained individuals. Our attorneys frequently represent people at both the GEO Detention Center and the downtown immigration court.
Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA)
The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), located in Falls Church, Virginia, has jurisdiction to review the decisions of Immigration Judges. At the end of a case before the Immigration Court, either side can reserve appeal. The appeal must be filed within 30 days of the Judge’s decision. Generally, appeals to the BIA are made in written briefs submitted by mail to the court. Although the BIA can permit oral arguments, it rarely does. Because the decision by the BIA is the final decision of the agency an appeal to the BIA is often the last opportunity to achieve a positive decision from the court. Our attorneys understand the importance of advancing the strongest legal argument in all briefs submitted to the BIA.
In certain circumstances, the final agency decision of the BIA can be further litigated in a U.S circuit court of appeals. Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, and can only hear certain claims related to an immigration matter. Immigration-related federal court litigation is drastically different from litigation in the immigration courts, proceedings before the USCIS, or practice before the Board of Immigration Appeals. We have successfully argued cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.
In addition to challenging the final agency decision of the BIA, federal courts can be used to challenge:
- the USCIS’ unreasonable delay in adjudicating an application or petition
- the USCIS’ denial of an application for naturalization
- the unlawful detention of someone in immigration custody
- a removal order on legal or constitutional grounds
If you have filed a benefits application, such as an adjustment of status (green card) or a naturalization application, and if you have already been interviewed, but have been waiting an unreasonably long time for a decision, you can begin litigation in federal court against the USCIS by filing a mandamus to compel a prompt adjudication. You are entitled to have your benefits application adjudicated and the USCIS is required to adjudicate applications in a reasonable time. Litigation in federal court can lead to a resolution in matter of weeks or months. A mandamus suit is started in the federal district court in the district in which you reside.
Our attorneys have the expertise to file habeas corpus and other types of cases in Federal District Court.