- When Can You File a Petition for Review?
- Why it is Important to File a PFR?
- Seek Legal Representation
If the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) has ordered “removed” or “deported,” then non-citizens of the United States may file a Petition for Review (PFR) with the Circuit Courts. Several jurisdictions do not give immigrants the right to appeal a decision of an Immigration Judge directly to the U.S. Court of Appeals. You would first need to make a BIA appeal and if you lose, only then you can file a PFR with the federal court.
The PFR may be successful if you can establish that the decision given by the Immigration Judge, and subsequently the Board of Immigration Appeals, is erroneous or withholding your immigration rights. However, not all decisions can be appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals. But if eligible, the petition must be filed within 30 days after the BIA passes the decision.
The petition should include potential issues regarding the decision and your grounds in favor of the review, and any supporting authority or arguments.
When Can You File a Petition for Review?
If the BIA has passed the “final order of removal,” you can appeal with the Circuit Courts to review the decision and protect your right to U.S. citizenship by Naturalization. In most cases, you cannot file a PFR with a lower federal court; the Circuit Court holds exclusive jurisdiction to review the decision.
Here are the types of BIA decisions you can appeal for review at the Circuit Court:
- When the BIA passes a decision favoring a final removal order
- The decision to deny asylum in proceedings that are asylum-only
- The BIA denies a motion to reopen or a motion to reconsider
- When the ICE issues an order of removal under INA § 238(b) (administrative removal) or INA § 241(a)(5) (reinstatement of removal)
However, it is important to note that not all decisions can be appealed to the Circuit Courts. You can use a petition for review to appeal only for cases that involve legal or constitutional issues.
For instance, the Circuit Courts cannot review your petition if the Immigration Judge or the BIA has denied your case stating you do not deserve to stay in the U.S. If your motion to reopen the case has been denied by the BIA, even then the federal court cannot probably review the case. The PFR is applicable when the Immigration Judge has ordered your removal or deportation because of a criminal conviction and you disagree with the same.
Additionally, if the Judge denies your asylum claim and says that the social group is invalid, even then you can file a PFR with the Circuit Courts. Understanding the nitty-gritty of PFR can be complex, and therefore, you should consult the best immigration lawyer. They will help you understand when you can file a petition for review and which BIA decisions are excluded.
A good attorney will also set up a strong plea, with adequate arguments in your favor to prevent removal or deportation.
Why it is Important to File a PFR?
If the Immigration Court has ordered you “removed” and the BIA has also not reversed the decision in your favor, then the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency hold the right to detain and deport you. To avoid this, you can file for a PFR and ask the Circuit Court to put a stay on removal. If the latter grants it, the ICE cannot detain or deport you from the United States even if the PFR is pending.
If the BIA passes the final order of removal and you do not file the PFR timely, it may become difficult to apply for a request to review your case and get the order of removal reversed. Therefore, it is important to file a petition for review as soon as the BIA passes its decision, not exceeding 30 days from the day of such decision.
Seek Legal Representation
If the Board of Immigration Appeals has “denied” your plea and passed the final order of removal or deportation, then it might be worthwhile talking to a good immigration law firm. They will help you file a stay a petition for review as well as a stay of removal so that you cannot be deported while your PFR is pending with the Circuit Courts.
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