NILA in Action

District Court Denies USCIS Attempt to Dismiss U Visa Delay Case

On August 18, 2021, in Alvarez Espino v. USCIS, the U.S. District Court for the District of Vermont denied a motion to dismiss filed by Defendant U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in NILA’s challenge to the agency’s unreasonable delay in placing the plaintiffs on the U visa waiting list. The court concluded that discovery was necessary for it to fully consider the factors that inform whether an agency’s delay is unreasonable. Consequently, in addition to denying the motion to dismiss, the court allowed the parties 6 months to engage in discovery. NILA’s co-counsel in the case is Maria Baldini-Potermin & Associates. Read the decision here.

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Vangala v. USCIS – Post-Settlement Frequently Asked Questions

On July 20, 2021, in Vangala v. USCIS, a case litigated by NILA, NWIRP, and Van Der Hout LLP, a federal district court judge approved a final Settlement Agreement that provides relief to over 60,000 asylum and U visa applicants. Counsel for the plaintiffs prepared this FAQ explaining the terms of the Settlement Agreement and the steps that applicants must take before July 20, 2022. The FAQ is here.

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Template Motion to Rescind In Absentia Removal Order In Light of Niz-Chavez v. Garland

NILA has created a template motion for individuals with in absentia orders in removal proceedings that were commenced by a defective Notice to Appear (NTA), i.e., an NTA that lacked the date and/or time of the removal hearing. Under Pereira v. Sessions, 138 S. Ct. 2105 (2019) and Niz-Chavez v. Garland, 141 S. Ct. 1474 (2021), one can argue that they did not receive lawful notice of their removal hearing and, thus, the immigration judge should rescind the in absentia order. The template is here.

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