Immigration Law

Recent Posts

BIA Pro Bono Project News (Sept. 15, 2022)
Posted on 15 Sep 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

EOIR, Sept. 15, 2022 "As part of EOIR’s “Access EOIR” initiative, the agency is seeking to revise its Form EOIR-26 , Notice of Appeal from a Decision of an Immigration Judge, to include a section for unrepresented respondents... Read More

Tags: bia , pro bono , eoir

CA1 on Abuse of Discretion: Rivera-Medrano v. Garland
Posted on 30 Aug 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Rivera-Medrano v. Garland "Karen Elizabeth Rivera-Medrano, a citizen and native of El Salvador, has petitioned for review of an order of the Board of Immigration Appeals ("BIA") affirming the denial of her request for withholding of removal... Read More

Garland Appoints New BIA Member: Beth Liebmann
Posted on 15 Apr 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

EOIR, Apr. 13, 2022 "Attorney General Merrick B. Garland has appointed Beth Liebmann as a Member of EOIR’s Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). ... Judge Liebmann earned a Bachelor of Arts in 1981 from Brandeis University and a Juris Doctor... Read More

Tags: bia , eoir , garland

BIA Amicus Invitation: Texas Burglary; Crime of Violence; Due Date May 3, 2022
Posted on 12 Apr 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

EOIR, Apr. 12, 2022 "ISSUES PRESENTED: 1. Whether, in light of U.S. v. Herrold, 941 F.3d 173 (5th Cir. 2019) (en banc), and regardless of the specific mens rea of an underlying crime, the commission or attempted commission of a felony, theft... Read More

BIA Amicus Invitation: Vacatur of a Criminal Conviction (Due Date Apr. 6, 2022)
Posted on 16 Mar 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

BIA, Mar. 16, 2022 "The Board of Immigration Appeals welcomes interested members of the public to file amicus curiae briefs discussing the below issue: ISSUE PRESENTED: What factors should the Board weigh when considering an untimely motion to... Read More

Tags: amicus brief , bia

82,645 Appeals Pending at the BIA
Posted on 9 Mar 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

As of Jan. 19, 2022 there are 82,645 appeals pending at the BIA. Read More

Tags: Appeals , bia , backlog , eoir

CA4 on Abuse of Discretion, Continuances: Garcia Cabrera v. Garland
Posted on 7 Jan 2022 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Garcia Cabrera v. Garland "This petition arises out of an immigration judge’s (IJ) refusal (affirmed by the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA)) to continue the deportation proceedings of a movant that the IJ himself recognized was likely... Read More

EOIR Electronic Case Access and Filing Final Rule
Posted on 10 Dec 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 236 / Monday, December 13, 2021 "On December 4, 2020, the Executive Office for Immigration Review (“EOIR”) published a notice of proposed rulemaking (“NPRM” or “proposed rule”... Read More

EOIR on Administrative Closure
Posted on 23 Nov 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

EOIR, Nov. 22, 2021 "On July 15, 2021, the Attorney General issued a precedential decision in Matter of Cruz-Valdez, 28 I&N Dec. 326 (A.G. 2021). In that decision, the Attorney General restored the authority of immigration judges and the Board... Read More

BIA CIMT Amicus Invitation (Due Date: Dec. 8, 2021)
Posted on 18 Nov 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Amicus Invitation No. 21-17-11 "ISSUE PRESENTED: In Hernandez v. Whitaker, 914 F.3d 430 (6th Cir. 2019), the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit concluded that section 750.82 of the Michigan Compiled Laws is not divisible and that... Read More

Tags: amicus brief , bia , cimt

BIA Amicus Invitation: Aggravated Felony (Due Nov. 30, 2021)
Posted on 9 Nov 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Amicus Invitation No. 21-09-11 "ISSUE PRESENTED: Whether all aggravated felonies under section 101(a)(43) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(43), per se come within the ambit of a particularly serious crime, such that... Read More

BIA on Nexus, Jurisdiction, Voluntary Departure: Matter of M-F-O-
Posted on 4 Nov 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Matter of M-F-O-, 28 I&N Dec. 408 (BIA 2021) - A notice to appear that does not specify the time or place of a respondent’s initial removal hearing does not end the accrual of physical presence for purposes of voluntary departure at the conclusion... Read More

BIA Amicus Brief Deadline Extended
Posted on 29 Oct 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

EOIR, Oct. 29, 2021 "Amicus Invitation No. 21-30-09 AMICUS INVITATION (Record of Conviction) Due October 21, 2021 (Amended) Deadline extended, Due November 19, 2021 November 19, 2021 The Board of Immigration Appeals welcomes interested members... Read More

Tags: amicus brief , bia

CA4 Abrogates Matter of S-O-G- & F-D-B-!
Posted on 20 Oct 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

Chavez Gonzalez v. Garland "We hold today that the IJs and BIA possess the inherent authority to terminate removal proceedings, abrogating Matter of S-O-G- & F-D-B-. We likewise conclude the BIA improperly denied Petitioner’s request... Read More

Tags: bia , termination

Parties "Optimistic" of Settlement in NYLAG v. BIA (Unpub. FOIA)
Posted on 20 Oct 2021 by Daniel M. Kowalski

DOJ letter, Oct. 15, 2021 "Plaintiff seeks the publication of unpublished decisions issued by the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”) — both historical opinions that the BIA has already issued and opinions that the BIA will issue... Read More

Tags: bia , FOIA
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA MTR Victory: Russia, Homosexuality

    Aaron C. Hall writes: "Our client first applied for asylum in 1992 based on persecution by the KGB in the former Soviet Union on account of his political opinion. His application was denied by the IJ and on appeal by the BIA and the Tenth Circuit. He then filed a Motion to Reopen with the BIA...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Remand Victory: Using Martinez v. Mukasey

    "[I]n Martinez v. Mukasey, 519 F.3d 532 (5th Cir. 2008), the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit reached a different result than that reached by this Board in Matter of Koljenovic, 25 I&N Dec. 219 (BIA 2010) (LJ. at 6-7). The Fifth Circuit determined that the statutory bar on...
  • Blog Post: Unpublished BIA Victory: 212(c), Ineffective Assistance, Mental Capacity

    Jon Eric Garde of Las Vegas recently received good news from the BIA, granting his motion to reopen a case that had last been before the Board in 1998! Matter of Stevens, A035-172-124 - Detroit, Oct. 12, 2011, unpublished .
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Victory: Mali, FGM, one-year bar

    Prof. Geoffrey A. Hoffman writes: " The UH Immigration Clinic has just won an appeal from the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) involving an asylum claim which was denied previously by the Immigration Court here in Houston. The claim was filed by a mother of a family of four. She had suffered...

    "This case will make an interesting teaching example for immigration professors discussing the ramifications of the Attorney General’s precedential decision on female genital mutilation (FGM), Matter of A-T- I&N Dec. 617 (A.G. 2008). In the decision rendered by the BIA on October 14...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Remand Victory: AOS, False Claim

    Matthew L. Kolken writes: " Attached is a BIA decision overturning the IJ in Buffalo. He ruled that my client was statutorily ineligible for adjustment due to an alleged false claim to US citizenship that never happened. I moved for recusal during the course of proceedings, which was denied...
  • Blog Post: Seventh Circuit on JRADs, due process, ineffective assistance

    "Jorge Solis-Chavez is a native of Guatemala who has been a lawful permanent resident in the United States since 1980. In 2007 he faced removal as a result of a 1989 Illinois conviction for sexual abuse of a minor. He initially argued that he was not subject to removal because the judge who convicted...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Remand Victory: CAT, Mexico, credibility, social group

    "[T]he adverse credibility finding is clearly erroneous inasmuch as it based on minor inconsistencies and improper speculation (Resp. Br. at 15). See Ren v. Holder, 648 F.3d 1 (9th Cir. 2011) (trivial inconsistencies that under total circumstances have no bearing on petitioner's veracity should...
  • Blog Post: Fourth Circuit on evidence: Tassi v. Holder

    "[O]ur analysis of Tassi’s petition for review exposes several categories of error. For example, the IJ contravened the principle that corroborative evidence supporting an asylum application cannot be rejected solely because it does not strictly comport with the rules of evidence or because...
  • Blog Post: New BIA Member Appointed

    "The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) today announced that Attorney General Eric Holder appointed Ana Landazabal Mann to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). Ms. Mann will begin work as a board member on November 21, 2011." - EOIR, Nov. 15, 2011 .
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Victory: child abuse

    Attorney Aaron Tarin writes: " Here is a bit of good news to those battling the toxic spread of Matter of Soram 's expansive definition of child abuse. [In an unpublished decision dated Dec. 6, 2011 ] the Board held that Assault with Substantial Bodily Injury in the Presence of a Child...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA mental competency remand victory

    "[A] remand is appropriate to enable the parties to apply the framework set out in Matter of M-A-M-, supra, including consideration of whether the respondent has a mental illness that impacted her credibility at the hearing." - Matter of X-, Oct. 5, 2011 . [Hats off to Rachel Gore Freed at...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA asylum remand victory: arrest warrant as pretext

    "On appeal, the respondent argues that the arrest warrant issued against him is a pretext for political persecution. See Long v. Holder 620 F3d 162, 166 (2nd Cir. 2010) (noting that prosecution that is pretext for political persecution is not on account of law enforcement); Matter of Sibrun, 18...
  • Blog Post: What the BIA is reading

    Here's a link to the Nov-Dec 2011 issue (Vol. 5, No. 10) of the Immigration Law Advisor , published by EOIR.
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Cancellation Victory

    Jose Quintero of Catholic Charities, Miami, won this recent victory at the BIA. Bravo! "[W]e conclude that the respondent warrants cancellation of removal as a matter of discretion. In finding that the respondent did not merit a favorable exercise of discretion, the Immigration Judge properly considered...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Visa Petition Victory: MTF Transgender Married to USC Male

    "Having considered the unique circumstances of this case, we find that, while it does not mirror the factual scenario of Matter of Lovo , supra, it is a variation of our finding in that case. ... [W]e find that the petitioner and the beneficiary have a "monogamous, heterosexual marriage."...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Waiver Victory: 'Otherwise Admissible'

    Russell R. Abrutyn writes: "Although there were a number of issues in this case, the primary issue was whether the noncitizen, who married a few days before immigrating as the child of a DV winner, was eligible for a 237(a)(1)(H) waiver. The Immigration Judge and, initially, the BIA held ...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Res Judicata Victory: Gaytan-Castro

    "We agree with the Immigration Judge that the present removal proceedings are barred under the doctrine of res judicata even if the respondent was erroneously granted adjustment of status in the prior proceedings. ... Although the instant proceedings are based on a different charge of removability...
  • Blog Post: BIA on divisibility: Matter of Lanferman, ID 3744, 25 I&N Dec. 721 (BIA 2012)

    Matter of Lanferman, ID 3744, 25 I&N Dec. 721 (BIA 2012) - A criminal statute is divisible, regardless of its structure, if, based on the elements of the offense, some but not all violations of the statute give rise to grounds for removal or ineligibility for relief.
  • Blog Post: David Neal new BIA Chairman; Robin Stutman new CAHO

    "The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) announced today that the Attorney General has appointed a new Chairman of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). Effective March 26, 2012, David L. Neal, previously Vice Chairman of the BIA, will serve the agency as Chairman. Mr. Neal...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA 'Extreme Cruelty' Victory: Matter of A-L-M-

    "The principal question on remand is whether the respondent remains eligible for special rule cancellation of removal despite the death of her daughter. We find that she does." - Matter of A-L-M-, Mar. 5, 2012, unpub . Hats off to Katherine Barrett Wiik, National Network to End Violence...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Asylum Victory; Egypt, Persecution, 'Unreasonable Expectations'

    David L. Cleveland writes: "An asylum applicant from Egypt suffered real harm, including an assault by an unidentified man that left her unconscious, but was denied by the IJ for failing to show the motive of her attacker. The BIA said that the IJ "may have imposed an unreasonable expectation...
  • Blog Post: Matter of A-Y-M-, ID 3750, 25 I&N Dec. 791 (BIA 2012)

    Matter of A-Y-M-, ID 3750, 25 I&N Dec. 791 (BIA 2012) - Following the enactment of the Child Status Protection Act, Pub. L. No. 107-208, 116 Stat. 927 (2002), an unmarried alien seeking derivative asylum status based on the approval of his or her parent’s application for asylum who turned 21...
  • Blog Post: Searching for that Unpub. BIA Case?

    A reader writes: "I would be very grateful if you could locate and transmit to me copies of two unreported Board cases cited at page 359 of the March 15, 2007 BIB: Matter of Mitter , A73-767-969 (BIA July 20, 2006) and Matter of Lee , A79-626-439 (BIA Apr. 12, 2006)." I used the "Search"...
  • Blog Post: Unpub. BIA Marriage Fraud Victory: Matter of Kagau

    "While the Notice Of Intent to Deny ("NOID") the previous visa petition questioned the validity of the underlying marriage and referenced the fraud provision under section 204(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.c. § 1154(c), neither the NOID nor the subsequent Field...