The Justice Department announced today that they will no longer impose case completion quotas for immigration judges that were imposed upon them by the prior administration. The judges claimed that completion quotas undercut the judges’ authority and discretion to decide matters before them. Immigration Judges are employees of the Department of Justice and they typically hear immigration violation cases and decide who can remain in the United States. The quotas previously required them to limit the time for case presentation and decisions.
There are currently over 1.5 million cases in a backlog at immigration courts nationwide. This decision is not expected to expedite those cases but it shows an effort by the Biden administration to move away from those rules. The agency will reassess the performance metrics at a later date and they will come up with new policies to hopefully deal with the backlog. “Suspension of the metrics is an excellent first step,” said Mimi Tsankov, president of the National Association of Immigration Judges, the immigration judges’ union. “We now await the opportunity for management to recognize NAIJ and work with us to establish appropriate measures for the agency to assess its productivity and ensure due process for the parties before us and judges themselves.”
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