If the BIA denies my appeal, do I have any other options?

by Blake P. Somers, Lawyer Referral Service Panelist 

Yes; if an individual at this stage receives an appellate decision with which they disagree, they still have additional appellate rights. People in the United States are generally entitled to one level of review by an actual Federal Court. In immigration proceedings which are administrative in nature, people obtain this level of Federal Review by filing a Petition For Review with the Circuit Court of Appeals, which had territorial jurisdiction over the Immigration Court where their original trial was held (i.e. not the Board of Immigration Appeals).

The Federal Review Process proceeds largely the same as at the Board of Immigration Appeals. First, the Court receives the file. Next, a briefing schedule is issued. After briefs are submitted, oral argument may or may not be heard, after which a decision will be rendered. (Note: oral argument is also available at the Board of Immigration Appeals, but it is rarely requested, and even less rarely granted.)

There is one final level of review that is available. People may still seek certiorari to the United States Supreme Court. However, this option is extremely limited as the Supreme Court of the United States roughly hears 1 percent of the cases it is requested to hear each year.

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