Challenging Final Removal Orders in the Federal Appellate Courts by Prosecuting

Federal Appellate Court Litigation

In Brief

How We
Can Help

Our primary case type involves challenging the Board of Immigration Appeals’ final orders in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

By petitioning the federal courts of appeals, you can get a federal appellate court to review your removal order. You can also play an important role in creating precedents that will affect others’ cases. 

Contact us today to discuss prosecuting a petition for review or an appeal from a district court order in an immigration-related litigation matter.

Challenging Administratively Final Orders

Petitions for Review

Photo of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit's James R. Browning United States Courthouse by Ken Lund is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

If you or a family member have recently received a final removal order, you should contact appellate counsel as soon as possible to discuss your options. You may be able to petition for review and obtain a stay of removal while you prosecute that petition.

Before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) can remove (deport) a non-citizen from the United States, it generally needs an order giving it the authority to do that. There are a few different ways that DHS can obtain this kind of order, including removal proceedings; expedited removal proceedings; administrative removal proceedings; reinstatement of removal; and alien terrorist removal proceedings.

Outside a few narrow exceptions, non-citizens can generally seek
judicial review of those final orders of removal–and a stay of removal–in the appropriate federal court of appeals. But doing so requires petitioning for review very soon after–within thirty days of–the final order’s entry.

Removal Proceedings

For most non-citizens inside the United States, DHS needs to file formal charges and prosecute a removal case against that person before an immigration judge (IJ) from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), another federal government department.

Once DHS places someone in proceedings, the IJ has the power to determine whether that person is removable as charged and to order them removed. The IJ can also grant them relief or protection from removal.

After the IJ decides the case, either party may ask the IJ to reopen the case or reconsider the decision.

Either party may also appeal the IJ’s decision to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), an administrative tribunal in Falls Church, Virginia, that is part of the same agency as the immigration court. And the Attorney General may also intervene.

After the BIA decides the case, either party may ask the BIA to reopen the case or reconsider the decision.

And importantly here, the non-citizen may ask a federal court of appeals to review of the BIA’s order on the appeal or motion.

If the BIA has recently denied your or a family member’s case, you should contact appellate counsel quickly to discuss your appellate options. You may be able to challenge that order and obtain a stay of removal in a federal court of appeals.

Reinstatement of Removal and Administrative Removal

DHS can reinstate prior orders of removal for those whom it removed or who departed voluntarily and who later reentered without authorization. 

Non-citizens subject to these reinstatement proceedings–including reasonable fear proceedings before an asylum officer, reasonable fear review proceedings before an IJ, or withholding-only before an IJ and the BIA–can also challenge those orders in the federal appellate courts.

If DHS is trying to reinstate a prior removal order against you or a family member, you should contact trial counsel about representation in reasonable fear review proceedings or withholding-only proceedings, or appellate counsel about petitioning for review and moving for a stay of removal.

“The exclusive means to challenge an order of removal is the petition for review process.” Martinez v. Napolitano, 704 F.3d 620, 622 (9th Cir. 2012).

Set up a consultation today.

We will review your case and prepare a plan.