Individuals with potential immigration applications or cases in immigration court need to have the most accurate information possible on their immigration history. Because immigration files on individuals can span decades and often consist of hundreds or thousands of pages housed within different federal agencies, they often need to request copies of files through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Though FOIA is designed to allow the public access to records kept by the government quickly and efficiently, agencies’ delay and lack of compliance have long been a source of frustration, including for noncitizens seeking access to their records for immigration purposes.
The International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) recently published records it obtained through FOIA and through litigation related to the processing of FOIA requests by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and Department of State (DOS).
The documents obtained by IRAP included important findings for those seeking records from immigration agencies:
Having a complete understanding of a noncitizen’s immigration history is crucial to assessing challenges to deportability or inadmissibility and in preparing applications for immigration benefits. Kudos to IRAP for its resolve to obtain and to publish these records, which immediately become an indispensable resource for crafting FOIA requests, appealing insufficient agency productions, and in FOIA-related immigration.
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Joseph & Hall P.C. is a full-service immigration law firm. We pride ourselves on being nationwide experts in all areas of immigration law, including the practice areas listed below. Our attorneys frequently are asked to speak both locally and nationally on a wide variety of immigration topics. For an overview of each practice area, please click the links below. If you have any questions about how these practice areas may apply to your case, please do not hesitate to contact our firm.
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