Immigration Court Allows 57% of Non-Citizens to Remain in U.S.

The following Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) report (see below) revealed that, out of 169,258 noncitizens against whom DHS sought removal orders during the first 10 months of fiscal year 2016, Immigration Judges found that 96,223—or 57 percent—were entitled to remain in the United States.

During the first ten months of fiscal year 2016, immigration judges have determined that 96,223 noncitizens against whom Homeland Security sought removal orders were entitled to remain in this country. By the end of this fiscal year this pace is on track to surpass the record set last year of 106,676 noncitizens that the court found could remain in the U.S. These outcomes account for 56.8 percent of all cases that judges in immigration court have decided so far this year. See Figure 1.

Screenshot 2016-08-21 19.28.11

One in four individuals (25%) allowed to stay was from Mexico. Over four out of ten (44%) were from the three Central American countries — El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — where in recent years large numbers of unaccompanied children and women with children have come to this country seeking asylum. These figures are based upon case-by-case court records updated through the end of July 2016 obtained and analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University.

There are a number of reasons why an individual may be allowed to remain in the country. For example, the judge can find that the government did not meet its burden to show the individual was deportable. Or, the judge may have found that the individual was entitled to asylum in this country, or may grant relief from removal under other provisions of the law. A person also may be allowed to remain because the government requests that the case be administratively closed through the exercise of ICE’s prosecutorial discretion, or for some other reason.

Deportation Outcomes by Immigration Court

A free web app allows users to examine these cases in more detail by nationality, charge, Immigration Court, and hearing location. Outcomes, for example, vary markedly by Immigration Court. The Phoenix Immigration Court had the highest proportion of individuals who were allowed to stay. In more than four out of every five (82.2%) of its 3,554 cases closed so far in FY 2016 the individuals were successful in their quest to remain in the U.S.

The New York Immigration Court was in second place with 81.5 percent of the individuals in its 16,152 cases closed so far this year allowed to remain in the U.S. The Denver Immigration Court came in third with 78.0 percent of the 831 individuals in its cases successful in their quest to stay in this country.

At the other extreme were the Oakdale, Louisiana, Lumpkin (Stewart), Georgia, and Napanoch (Ulster), New York Immigration Courts where only between 11.3 percent and 17.5 percent of the individuals were allowed to remain in the U.S. Each of these courts handle cases for individuals who are held in detention.

Similar figures, including rankings, for each of the 55 Immigration Courts are listed below in Table 1. Begin Table 1

Table 1. Outcome in Immigration Court Cases, FY 2016 (October 2015 – July 2016)

Immigration Court

Closed Cases

Percent Allowed Stay

Rank

All Courts

169,258

56.8

Phoenix

3,554

82.2

1

New York

16,152

81.5

2

Denver

831

78.0

3

San Antonio

3,704

76.8

4

Miami

7,513

75.8

5

Newark

3,358

75.1

6

Philadelphia

2,325

74.1

7

Boston

4,142

73.9

8

Guaynabo

186

71.5

9

Los Angeles

17,981

70.4

10

San Francisco

9,447

70.3

11

Honolulu

353

68.8

12

Cleveland

2,202

64.9

13

Detroit

1,915

64.8

14

Portland

1,037

64.0

15

New Orleans

3,067

63.1

16

Baltimore

4,247

61.8

17

Seattle

2,440

61.7

18

Arlington

7,082

61.0

19

Las Vegas

2,738

60.4

20

Bloomington

1,563

59.3

21

San Diego

2,415

58.1

22

Memphis

5,189

57.5

23

Orlando

3,204

56.3

24

Hartford

1,166

55.3

25

Omaha

1,403

54.5

26

Saipan

13

53.8

27

Pearsall

1,594

53.5

28

Kansas City

1,760

52.8

29

Hagatna

21

52.4

30

Buffalo

1,299

52.0

31

Los Fresnos

1,505

46.1

32

Chicago

3,456

45.4

33

El Paso

3,183

45.3

34

Imperial

393

43.3

35

Atlanta

7,278

41.0

36

Tucson

734

41.0

36

Aurora

786

40.2

38

Harlingen

1,929

38.5

39

Elizabeth

1,156

38.0

40

West Valley

821

37.3

41

Houston – Detained

3,657

36.3

42

Tacoma

1,572

34.9

43

York

1,336

31.8

44

Miami – Krome

2,177

31.8

44

New York – Detain

632

29.4

46

Florence

1,004

28.9

47

Adelanto

1,789

26.2

48

Charlotte

4,153

25.9

49

Dallas

6,826

23.8

50

Houston

4,807

21.0

51

Eloy

1,466

19.4

52

Oakdale

2,240

17.5

53

Lumpkin

2,191

13.1

54

Napanoch

266

11.3

55

End Table 1 End Content

Report date: August 17, 2016