If you have lost your case in immigration court, you have the right to file an appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals (the BIA), but what happens if you lose there too? If the BIA denies your case the next step in the appeals process is to file what is called a “Petition for Review” to the Circuit Court of Appeals in your part of the country.

For a video on this process, see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LW8c-9vKGiQ

When you file a petition for review you ask the Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn and review and correct errors that the Board of Immigration Appeals made when they denied your case.

After the denial of your case by the BIA you will have 30 days to file the petition for review. Once you do that, your case will be pending and eventually you will need to write a legal brief. The appeals brief is the most complicated and challenging part of the petition for review process. You will want a talented immigration expert to write your brief. In the brief, your attorney will reference other cases and will explain in great detail every single reason that the BIA erred when it issued its decision.

After the brief the government will have an opportunity to write an opposition. The government attorney will list every legal reason that (according to them) you are wrong and that the BIA was right. After the government’s brief your attorney will have the opportunity to reply. The reply brief is typically the last part of the paper arguments.

The next step is the oral argument. Oral arguments before the Circuit Courts of Appeals are big deals. They require a LOT of preparation. Often an attorney will be given 10 to 15 minutes to answer the questions of three different judges and to argue for your case and for a potential change in immigration law. In some cases, you have oral argument, and in some cases, you won’t. If there is oral argument, you can attend with your attorney, but you do not have to. To watch me practice for an oral argument, see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkqan5CSRW0

Finally, after all the arguments have been heard, the judges of the Court of Appeals will issue their decision in your case. They might deny your case, they might approve your case, or they might remand your case back to the Board of Immigration Appeals.

If you have been denied at the BIA and if you are considering submitting a petition for review, please do not do it alone, please seek the help of a qualified immigration expert. Here at Landerholm Immigration APC, our immigration attorneys are here to help you. If you have a complex case, please do not hesitate to contact our office to see how we can help you. We have fought several cases at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and we would love to meet you and discuss representing you in your case.