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September 18, 2019

Immigration court backlog exceeds 1 million cases, data group says
By Priscilla Alvarez

In January, the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse estimated that more than 42,000 immigration court hearings had been canceled as a result of the shutdown -- exacerbating an issue Trump had pledged to resolve. "The latest case-by-case court records through the end of August 2019 show the court's active case backlog was 1,007,155," according to the clearinghouse's report released Wednesday. "If the additional 322,535 cases which the court says are pending but have not been placed on the active caseload rolls are added, then the backlog now tops 1.3 million." While a Justice Department spokesman said in a statement to CNN that the department "does not certify data from third parties," the spokesman added: "This report and DOJ's own data further confirms there is a crisis at the border. This Administration is taking aggressive steps to increase productivity, close loopholes, and hire a record number of judges to address the backlog with our existing authorities." While the clearinghouse doesn't attribute the backlog to any one factor, the American Bar Association has previously proposed a major overhaul of the US immigration system, calling the courts "irredeemably dysfunctional."

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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