If you are in removal proceedings, and you receive a final decision by an immigration judge that you do not agree with, you have the right to appeal that decision. An appeal is a request to have the immigration judge’s decision reviewed by a higher court. This would normally be done by the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), as it is their job to review decisions issued by immigration judges. It is important to note that if the government does not agree with the final decision issued on your case, they too have a right to appeal that decision.
In order to reserve your right to appeal, you must tell the judge at your hearing that you would like to do so. If you accept the judge’s decision as final or waive appeal, you will no longer have the opportunity to ask the BIA to review the decision in the future. It is an important decision to make, and not one that should be taken lightly. As such, before making this decision, and before your final court hearing, you should consult with an immigration attorney who can help you make the best choice for you and your case.
If your appeal is denied by the BIA, you may then ask a federal court to review the BIA’s decision. This is normally your last chance to have your case reviewed before final action is taken on your case.
Appeals are complicated, and whether you should file one is a difficult decision to make. It is always best to seek the advice of an attorney at the beginning of your immigration case, so that you are well-informed about your options, and are able to make the right choice about your case from the outset of the matter.
For more information regarding immigration appeals, or other complex immigration court matters, please contact our Deportation Defense Attorneys at Landerholm Immigration, APC at (510) 756-4468.