Monday, June 4, 2007

Recommendations on Improving the Immigration Courts and Board of Immigration Appeals

Human Rights First has issued a Summary of Recommendations Relating to the Comprehensive Review of the Immigration Courts and Board of Immigration Appeals (here).  Among the recommendations are revesring some of the BIA streamlining refirms iimplemented a few years ago, increased resources for the immigration courts and BIA, ebcouraging representation of immigrants, better training, and improved quality control.

KJ

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/immigration/2007/06/recommendations.html

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Comments

I agree with most of the recommendations, but not all.

In addition, the practice of some judges of “offering” withholding of removal in return for not having to conduct a full asylum hearing, or not having to hear several hours of testimony, should be abandoned. (This recommendation stems from concern that in some cases, refugees have been asked to negotiate away their chance to receive asylum simply to save an immigration judge’s time.)

The opportunity to bargain for withholding should not be abandoned too quickly. In some cases, the bargain is in the applicant's favor.

Prohibiting the practice of teleconferenced hearings, in which confidential communications between the detained respondent and his representative are impossible.

As a practical matter, many overstretched advocates and respondents of limited means simply can't attend some hearings. In some cases, it's a choice between a teleconference or no hearing at all. Perhaps the concern about confidential communications could be resolved by allowing breaks in the proceedings if necessary for such communications.

Posted by: yave begnet | Jun 4, 2007 9:00:00 PM

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