According to CBS Miami, nearly half of immigration judges in the United States are eligible to retire in the coming year. The Executive Office for Immigration Review stated that there are already 32 vacancies in addition to the 220 judges who could retire. The shortage of immigration judges has left those handling immigration cases overwhelmed, CBS reports.
Sadly, the predicament can leave legitimate asylum cases in limbo for several years.
According to the Executive Office, five percent of immigration judges retire each year on average, but volume of immigration cases in the system now could motivate a higher number of judges to retire, said the president of the National Association of Immigration Judges, Dana Leigh Marks.
“We are the forgotten stepchild,” Marks said, “When Congress wants to fund immigration enforcement, they forget about the court.”
Under the Obama Administration, some 360,000 people were removed from the U.S. in the last year alone. Additionally, Congress has continued to boost funding for immigration enforcement but failed to give the courts additional resources.
In fact, immigration judges don’t even have the guarantee of a court clerk, a bailiff, or a court reporter. While a federal judge could have access to multiple law clerks to handle several hundred complaints, three immigration judges could easily share one clerk to handle 1,500 cases.
Don’t Get Lost in the System: Get the Help You Need
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