A concern for many foreigners who are in removal proceedings is whether ICE is now putting cases on calendar that were previously administratively closed by the judge. The rumors are partially true. ICE has discretion whether to reopen a case that has been closed. Here’s what we have so far:
- Cases Reopened: ICE headquarters is ordering that cases should be recalendared where there is an arrest after administrative closure. In other words, your case can be recallendared for immigration removal before the judge if you have been arrested sometime after your immigration case was closed.
- Cases Not Reopened: An arrest or conviction prior to admin closure should not trigger a motion to recalendar. Also, ICE is not seeking to recalendar all of the cases that were administratively closed for prosecutorial discretion according to ICE headquarters.
In some jurisdictions, local ICE offices are seeking to recalendar PD cases where there was no intervening arrest or conviction. The American Immigration Lawyers Association is looking into the developing situation. We will provide updates as they become available.
Sometimes, immigrants are arrested but the charges are thrown out. Still, ICE will reopen immigration removal proceedings. An example might be an arrest for drunk driving, but the driver was not drunk so the case was thrown out. Another example would be where police are called for a domestic disturbance. The foreigner is arrested, but then released for lack of evidence. ICE will reopen removal proceedings in such cases. It helps to seek advice from a qualified immigration attorney before problems arise if possible.