Now May Be The Best Time To Seek Relief

Now May Be The Best Time To Seek Relief

If you are in deportation/removal proceedings, or were already ordered removed, and want to seek mercy, compassion, or other forms of relief, including having your case dismissed, now is probably the best time to do so, while Biden is still president and his administration is pushing for prosecutorial discretion.

During the Trump administration, the government was strict and harsh in connection with pursuing deportation/removal proceedings against almost everyone, sometimes for the most minor of immigration violations. The trial attorneys (TA) would refuse to consider exercising prosecutorial discretion and/or joining in a joint motion to reopen or dismiss. If a person was placed in deportation/removal, they could expect to go to trial.

Under the Biden administration, the government recognizes there are over 1.5 million deportation/removal cases pending, and there are not enough courtrooms or judges to handle them all. The Biden administration has developed a policy of prosecutorial discretion, where the TA’s have the authority and power to decide whether or not to pursue removal, dismiss a pending removal case, or agree to reopen and then dismiss a case where the person was previously ordered removed.

In one removal case at my office, the TA called us before the hearing date, asking if we would agree to a joint motion to dismiss the deportation/removal proceedings. Of course, we agreed, as that resulted in our client no longer having the threat and fear of deportation hanging over their head.

Even the immigration courts are looking for ways to reduce their pending cases. In another deportation/removal case, we had an upcoming merits hearing (which is already like the trial of the case, with witnesses, evidence, and testimony). We then received a notice from the court clerk, changing the hearing to a master (preliminary) hearing, where the immigration judge wanted the parties to discuss having the case dismissed or the TA exercising prosecutorial discretion.

If you have a new form of relief available to you (or way to get a green card), that was not previously available (such as marriage to a U.S. citizen, etc.), and you could benefit by having your deportation case dismissed or reopened, you may want to consult with an attorney, who can evaluate your case and, if eligible, assist in seeking prosecutorial discretion or dismissal.

Even if a person does not yet have a form of relief, or way to get a green card now, but they are not considered an “enforcement priority” or risk to our society, they could still be eligible for prosecutorial discretion or dismissal.

The reason I say now would be the best time to do so is that after the election, the composition of the Senate and House of Representatives may change, and there may once again be a return to strict enforcement of immigration.



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