If you or your loved one is currently involved in immigration proceedings before the Executive Office for Immigration Review, also known as Immigration Court, you should be aware of the procedures that are followed when and how the judge makes his or her decision regarding your or your loved one’s case. Most judges have a certain amount of discretion to reach a decision, which means that judges can use their knowledge and expertise to interpret law and apply the law to your individual facts and circumstances.
This discretion allows immigration judges to have much more power than other judges who preside over United States criminal or civil cases. Immigration judges can use their own reasoning to reach a decision that another judge might not reach. For example, if you are involved in a criminal case where a jury is supposed to decide the outcome of your case (i.e., guilty or not guilty), then the judge presiding over this case does not have the power to find the defendant guilty or not guilty. With Immigration Court, there is no jury, and therefore the decision-making is strictly left up to the judge.
Judicial discretion in Immigration Court can be both a good thing and a bad thing, as some judges are more open-minded than others. Some judges may consider individual family matters that will sway their decision to either allow you to remain in the United States, or force you to leave the United States, while other judges will only look at the facts surrounding why you are believed to be inadmissible. Therefore, you should speak with an immigration attorney as soon as you become aware that you are facing proceedings before Immigration Court.
Many immigrants are frightened by the thought of being removed from the United States, and do not appear at their immigration hearings. In such cases, an immigration judge may look at this conduct as a disrespect for authority, and this will only be further grounds for why an immigrant should be removed from the United States if that immigrant is ever found, arrested, and detained. An immigration judge is more likely to look at the “positive” facts of your case if you comply with all requirements after you have received notification that you must appear in Immigration Court.
Can I Appeal the Immigration Judge’s Decision?
If an immigration judge does not rule in your favor, and you are ordered to leave the United States, you have the right to appeal the judge’s decision, but you must do so within thirty days after the judge has entered his decision. The appeal is made to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). By filing a notice of appeal, the immigration judge’s order of removal with be “stayed,” or placed on hold while the appeals board reviews your case and either agrees or disagrees with the immigration judge’s decision in your case. You may further appeal your case if the BIA agrees with the immigration judge. Such appeals are made to the United States Court of Appeals.
Having adequate legal counsel to represent you in Immigration Court may greatly increase the chances that you can fight removal and lawfully stay in the United States. Further, if an immigration judge does order removal, and you appeal the judge’s decision, you will need experienced legal counsel by your side to ensure you are fighting to the fullest extent possible to remain in the United States, as going through the process on your own may result in your removal from the country.
Contact the Immigration Attorneys of Geygan & Geygan, Ltd. Today to Schedule a Free Consultation
If you or your loved one is currently involved in immigration proceedings, you should consider speaking with an experienced immigration attorney as soon as possible. Immigration Court is quite a bit different from the criminal and civil justice systems in the United States. There are different rules and procedures that you may not be aware of. With the help of a skilled immigration attorney, you will feel more comfortable that you or your loved one’s best interests are being looked out for. The immigration attorneys of Geygan & Geygan, Ltd. have helped clients get through the stressful process of facing proceedings in Immigration Court. To better understand what you may be dealing with and how our attorneys can help, contact our office today to schedule a free consultation. We can be reached by calling (513) 791-1673.