What Is A Master Calendar Hearing?

A “master calendar hearing” is the first hearing that an immigration court schedules after you have received a “Notice to Appear” from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), stating that you are subject to removal or deportation. You will receive a hearing notice that gives you the date, time, and place to appear in immigration court for your master calendar hearing. Master calendar hearings often are quite crowded. At times, 15 to 30 immigrants will also be scheduled for court at the same time as your hearing. Therefore, you may have to wait in the courtroom for some time until the judge calls your case number. Once your case is called, however, your master calendar hearing is likely to only take five to ten minutes, although you will find that some hearings last much longer, if there are several complicated issues to discuss. At that time you hear your case number called, you will go and sit with your attorney in front of the judge. The court sets every removal case for a master calendar hearing, which is a preliminary hearing where you, your attorney, the DHS attorney, an interpreter, and a judge will discuss future court dates for your case, and any pleas, strategies, defenses, or other preliminary matters in your case. First, you will give your name and address to the judge, as well as the name of the lawyer who is representing you in your immigration case. Next, you will either give pleadings stating your side of the case (answering the allegations in your Notice to Appear), or ask the judge for a continuance in order to have more time to prepare those arguments. At this time, you also can submit any application to the court that you want, such as, for example, an application for asylum. The judge will schedule another hearing in your case, and you also will discuss any motions, evidence, or other legal issues that come up in your case. The one thing to remember about a master calendar hearing – or any immigration court hearing, for that matter – is that if you fail to appear at your scheduled hearing, the court will order that you be immediately deported with no further notice. As a result, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) can immediately detain and deport you. In this situation, you should immediately contact an attorney to help you file a motion to reopen your case. No matter what type of defense is a possibility in your case, we are here to help you during your deportation proceedings to avoid deportation. We are experienced California deportation defense lawyers who know immigration law and know how to effectively represent your interests in your deportation case. We will build a strong case for any and all defenses that are available on your behalf. Call our office today and learn what the immigration attorneys of Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C., can do to help you and your family.

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