Jump in Asylum Decisions
(18 Feb 2020) The pace of deciding asylum cases is up sharply so far in FY 2020. A total of 33,194 asylum cases have already been decided on their merits according to the latest case-by-case Immigration Court data covering the first four months of fiscal year 2020 (October 2019 - January 2020). There were 67,520 asylum decisions during all of FY 2019. However, the court's backlog is still climbing as the pace of new receipts continues to exceed case completions.

So far 8,828 individuals have been granted asylum by immigration judges this fiscal year. Asylum seekers from China still make up the largest segment of those granted asylum. These are followed, in order, by individuals from El Salvador, Guatemala, India, Honduras, Cuba and Venezuela.

Asylum denial rates are also creeping upward. This fiscal year 72 percent of asylum cases were denied, up from 69 percent during FY 2019. Representation rates are also slipping. Asylum is not the only form of relief that the court granted. A total of 13,082 individuals were granted some form of relief from removal during the first four months of FY 2020. On average it took the court 936 days - over two and a half years - to decide these cases.

To examine the court's asylum decisions in more detail, now updated through January 2020, use TRAC's free asylum app:

Additional free web query tools which track Immigration Court proceedings have also been updated through January 2020. For an index to the full list of TRAC's immigration tools and their latest update go to:

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