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Immigrants face delays in court hearings

Georgia residents are likely aware that immigration has been a top political issue in the past several years. The issue may spend even more time in the spotlight as thousands of cases have been delayed until 2019. Delaying immigration hearings could result in many people being deported due to issues with dated evidence. Other issues could arise for children who become adults before their parents can become citizens.

Many lawyers who are handling these cases say that they were given little notice about these delays. They also say that they have no idea when their next court date may be. In the meantime, those who may have been granted a temporary status may not be able to leave the country without risking their ability to be in the country legally. For one 34-year-old man, it meant not being able to see his dying brother in Mexico.

The reason why many cases have been delayed has to do with a change in priority status for current cases. Prior to July 2014, only individuals in detention were given priority. However, unaccompanied minors and families facing deportation are now being given the same or a higher level of urgency in having their cases heard. Those who are familiar with the legal issues surrounding immigration say that there is a need for funding to hire more immigration judges to clear the backlog.

Those who are attempting to become a United States resident may wish to obtain the representation of an immigration attorney who may be able to protect the rights of a client who is attempting to gain legal status. Although the case can take time to finalize, legal counsel may be able to see a case through from start to finish.

Source: Huffington Post, "Immigrants Could Wait Until 2019 To Have Cases Resolved", Seth Robbins, Feb. 2, 2015

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