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Can An Immigration Decision Be Appealed?


Not all USCIS cases are eligible to be appealed. Some cases may qualify for a Motion to Reopen or Reconsider, which is a form of appeal. However, some form of appeal is usually possible, whether it is a straightforward appeal or one of the previously mentioned motions. If a case is eligible for appeal, the form of appeal that is appropriate depends on whether the original denial came from USCIS or from an immigration judge, and that determines where the appeal is filed. An appeal could be sent to the Administrative Appeals Office if the case was denied by USCIS, or to the Board of Immigration Appeals if an immigration judge denied the case.

Do Immigration Appeals Have Special Requirements?

Immigration appeals have special requirements. There is a 30-day deadline for most cases. However, because of the time, it takes for a decision to be mailed, USCIS normally allows for 33 days. If a deportation order is issued after a denial, the individual can file an appeal within 30 days of the denial. Both USCIS and immigration courts have specific procedures and requirements, as well. Most cases require that appeals be filed on specific forms, for both USCIS and the Board of Immigration Appeals, including an immigration judge’s denial.

Can You Walk Me Through The Process Of Appealing An Immigration Decision?

Because each case is unique, there will be slightly different immigration decision appeal processes. For example, an immigration judge, through immigration court, has denied an asylum case and issued a deportation order, which that individual disagrees with. They can appeal to a higher court within 30 days from the date of the deportation order. Because the original denial came from a judge, the appeal will need to be filed with the Board of Immigration Appeals. This agency handles denials from many different types of cases. Either the individual or their attorney would fill out the appeal form, stating why they believe the decision by the immigration judge was wrong, and attach all required documentation.

Many people don’t know that an appeal should have a brief to accompany it and that there is a deadline, given by the Board of Immigration Appeals, for filing the brief, in addition to the special appeal form. Additionally, a check must be attached to the appeal form, in order to pay for the filing fee. In return, appellants will receive transcripts from all of their court appearances. This gives the attorney the opportunity to review the court proceedings, to determine if and how a mistake was made, and to get a better overall understanding of the court proceedings.

An appeal will be a bit more complicated if the denial was issued by USCIS, because of the number of places than an appeal could be filed. Depending on the specific denial, the appeal would be filed either with the Board of Immigration Appeals, the Administrative Appeals Office, or a Motion to Reopen or Reconsider would be filed directly with USCIS. The case would only be reviewed by USCIS if an appeal cannot be filed with the Administrative Appeals Office. In the appeal or motion, you would need to state why you believe the denial was wrong and should be overturned. Like all other appeals, a brief will need to be attached to the special appeal form, and filing fees would need to be paid.

For more information on Appealing An immigration Decision, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (202) 350-2571 today.

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