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Law 360
January 27, 2019

Shutdown Delays Leave Immigrants In Extended Legal Limbo
By Cara Bayles

Unlike federal district court, immigration court falls under the purview of the U.S. Department of Justice and has been subject to partial closures due to the government shutdown that began in December. Immigration judges are hearing only the cases of people who are in custody, and according to a study from Syracuse University, the court's backlog for non-detained immigrants is rapidly growing. Nationwide, courts have canceled about 20,000 hearings per week. By Friday, an estimated 86,000 hearings for non-detained immigrants had been canceled nationwide, according to numbers from Syracuse. Because the caseload was already large before the shutdown, and judges' calendars are jam-packed, those hearings might be rescheduled years in the future.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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