‘No Dark Courtrooms’ – EOIR

It is now common knowledge that there is a staggering backlog in the Immigration Courts. As of now, there are over 850,000 cases pending in the Immigration Courts nationwide with trials scheduled in 2022. Although many have demanded more immigration judges be hired to combat the massive backlog, Congress has routinely denied the requests, deeming it too costly. On March 29, 2019, the Director of the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) James McHenry came up with what his agency believes to be the solution to reduce the caseload: a Policy Memorendum (PM) called “No dark courtrooms”.  Even though he had previously used this phrase in his November 2017 speech, this PM is going to take effect  on May 1, 2019. A dark courtroom is an “immigration courtroom that is not being utilized during blocks of available time”.  This clearly means that these dark courtrooms greatly contribute to the increasing backlog. Moreover,…

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