Record Number of New Immigration Court Cases Arrive in August; Destinations For Asylum Seekers Shifting
(20 Sep 2023) Shifting A total of 180,065 new deportation cases arrived at the Immigration Court during August. This is a jump of 19 percent in just one month; July filings had reached a previous high of 151,910. While the growth rate of 19 percent is large, it has moderated from the 28 percent jump seen from June to July.

Thus far more than 1,230,000 new deportation cases have been added to the Court’s docket during FY 2023. California has received the most new immigrants with 160,297 new arrivals so far in FY 2023. But five states have each received over 50,000 new immigrants and eight more have received at least 25,000. Only California and Texas of these thirteen border the U.S.-Mexico border.

Destinations for asylum seekers are shifting away from New York City where August numbers of new arrivals fell by 4 percent compared with arrivals during July. Miami-Dade County, Florida received virtually the same number that came in July. In contrast, arrivals in Dallas County, Texas shot up by 29 percent as Dallas surpassed Miami as a destination. In August alone, thirty-seven counties in eighteen different states received 1,000 or more immigrants with new Immigration Court cases.

As new asylum seekers fanned out across the country, Immigration Courts everywhere were struggling with large backlogs. While the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) has ramped up recruiting efforts to add new Immigration Judges, decades of underfunding has meant that it has been unable to make a dent in the backlog which continues to climb and reached 2,620,591 in August.

Growing numbers of old cases cannot be scheduled for their hearings because there is no room on the docket as some new Court initiatives to speed the processing of newly arriving cases push older cases farther and farther back in line, waiting for hearings.

For state-by-state details see the full report. For county specific figures go to TRAC’s free web query tool on New Immigration Court Proceedings located here.

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