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Government shutdown causes issues for US immigration law system

Individuals who have immigration cases pending or currently underway often feel a great deal of anticipation. As their hearing dates approach, they may feel a mixture of emotions as they may hope for the best, fear the worst and simply feel relieved that their cases are moving forward. Unfortunately, many individuals working on U.S. immigration law cases in Louisiana and elsewhere may face setbacks.

Though any number of issues could derail an immigration case, the current government shutdown is wreaking havoc on the immigration system. Immigration courts already have a substantial backlog of cases, and the shutdown appears to only be making the situation worse because immigration judges have been furloughed during this time. As a result, current cases cannot move forward, and due to the substantial backlog, hearings that were already scheduled may not be rescheduled for some time.

The report gave an example of a case in another state in which an individual was scheduled for a procedural hearing for a deportation case, but the hearing was canceled because of the shutdown. Now, it is unlikely that the person’s hearing will be rescheduled until 2020. The shutdown resulted due to disagreement over the presidential administration pursuing $5 billion for a border wall.

Individuals facing immigration issues often work hard to have their predicaments addressed and also often have to wait a substantial amount of time before they see any real progress in their cases. Unfortunately, situations like this shutdown only make their lives more difficult. Many aspects of U.S. immigration law are out of their control, and it may feel hard to keep fighting. However, individuals in Louisiana may want to continue working with their legal counsel so they do not lose hope.