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CA9 on In Absentia, Exceptional Circumstances: Hernandez-Galand v. Garland

May 12, 2021 (1 min read)

Hernandez-Galand v. Garland

"This case concerns in absentia removal orders entered against a mother and her minor child as a consequence of the mother’s failure to appear in immigration court. We hold that there are exceptional circumstances in this case that warrant reopening. Therefore, we grant the petition for review and remand for further proceedings. ... In light of the totality of the circumstances, we conclude that Ms. Hernandez has made a sufficient showing of exceptional circumstances warranting relief under [Sec.] 1229a(b)(5)(C)(i), and the BIA abused its discretion in denying her request to reopen the case. Accordingly, we GRANT the petition for review and REMAND to the BIA for further proceedings consistent with this opinion."

[Hats way off to Stephen B. Kang (argued), ACLU Foundation Immigrants’ Rights Project, San Francisco, California; Ahilan T. Arulanantham, ACLU Foundation of Southern California, Los Angeles, California; Matt Adams, Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, Seattle, Washington; Talia Inlender and Kristen Jackson, Public Counsel Law Center, Los Angeles, California; Kristin Macleod-Ball, American Immigration Council, Brookline, Massachusetts; Karolina J. Walters, American Immigration Council, Washington, D.C.; for Petitioners!]