A motion to reopen is an important statutory mechanism for people who have been ordered removed. It allows these individuals to ask either the immigration judge (IJ) or the BIA to consider the material and previously unavailable evidence and vacate the existing order.
When an IJ or the BIA reopens a case, the existing removal order is vacated. In addition to the general reopening statute at 8 U.S.C., there are two other statutory provisions addressing specific bases for motions to reopen: governing motions to apply for fear-based protection based on changed country conditions and governing special rule motions for qualifying survivors of domestic violence.
The Supreme Court recognizes that a “motion to reopen is an ‘important safeguard’ intended ‘to ensure a proper and lawful disposition of immigration proceedings.”
Reasons for Filing a Motion to Reopen:
- New Evidence: If you have obtained new evidence that is material to your case and was not previously available, you may be eligible to file a motion to reopen. This evidence could include documents, witness statements, or other forms of proof that support your claims or demonstrate a change in circumstances.
- Ineffective Assistance of Counsel: If you believe that your previous attorney provided ineffective assistance or made serious errors that affected the outcome of your case, you may have grounds to file a motion to reopen. In such cases, you would need to provide evidence of the attorney’s deficient performance and show how it prejudiced your case.
- Changed Country Conditions: If there have been significant changes in the conditions of your home country since your case was decided, such as political unrest, violence, or persecution, you may be able to file a motion to reopen based on changed country conditions. This requires providing credible and compelling evidence of the new conditions and their impact on your eligibility for relief.
- Administrative Errors: If there were administrative errors or procedural irregularities in your case that affected the fairness or legality of the decision, you can file a motion to reopen to address those errors. This could include errors in the application process, improper notice, or failure to consider relevant evidence.
- Lack of Notice: If you can demonstrate that you did not receive proper notice of your immigration proceedings or were not aware of the hearing date, you may be able to file a motion to reopen based on lack of notice. It is important to provide evidence of the lack of notice and show that you were diligent in pursuing your case.
- Humanitarian or Family-Based Reasons: In certain circumstances, humanitarian or family-based considerations may warrant a motion to reopen. This could include situations where the applicant or their family members are facing extreme hardship, medical issues, or other compelling circumstances that were not previously considered.
Filing a motion to reopen is a complex legal process that requires in-depth knowledge of immigration law and procedures. It is highly recommended to work with an experienced immigration attorney who can assess the merits of your case, guide you through the moving process, and advocate for your interests. That’s why you should choose the Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu. At the Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu, our dedicated team of immigration attorneys will ensure that all necessary documents are properly prepared, legal arguments are effectively presented, and procedural requirements are met. We understand the significance of a successful motion in reopening your case and providing you with the opportunity to pursue the relief you deserve. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and discuss your options.