Motion to Reopen: An Overview

Motion to Reopen: An Overview

An order of removal or deportation has a ring of finality to it. And often it does mean that the life one hoped to establish in this country has come to an end. However, if you have been received an order of removal or deportation all may not be lost. The solution to your immigration problem may be to file a motion to reopen the removal proceedings so you can get another day in court and one more chance to start a life in this country. Here is a brief overview of this request which is made to an immigration judge or the board of immigration appeals.

What is a Motion to Reopen?

As the name implies, a motion to reopen is an important statutory mechanism which asks that a judge or legal body consider material and previously unavailable evidence and to vacate an existing removal or deportation order. The Supreme Court has time and time again recognized this important safeguard to civil liberties in the following cases Kucana v. Holder, 558 U.S. 233, 242 (2010); Dada v. Mukasey, 554 U.S. 1, 18 (2008)). Also, See Reyes Mata v. Lynch, 135 S. Ct. 2150, 2153 (2015); regarding this right for non-citizens. An immigration attorney in Oxnard can file this very important document for you.

What are some Grounds for Filing a Motion to Reopen?

A motion to reopen must establish that there are new facts in the case in question and that the “evidence sought to be offered is material and was not available and could not have been discovered or presented at the former hearing.” 8 C.F.R. §§ 1003.2(c); 1003.23(b)(3). Common grounds for reopening include:

  • Ineffective assistance of prior counsel which prejudiced the case.
  • Changed conditions in the noncitizen’s home country that leads him or her to fear persecution there.immigration
  • Exceptional circumstances that caused the noncitizen not to appear for an immigration court hearing, etc.

How our immigration lawyers can help

Because a motion to reopen is such an intricate legal proceedings that carries with it grave consequences, we would not advise you to attempt to file one without the assistance of a qualified legal counsel. I am attorney Erika Roman and I can provide you with such counsel after speaking with you – for free – about your case. If you receive a notice of removal or deportation, we will help you determine whether a motion to reopen is your best option (there are others).

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