Understanding Motion to Dismiss in Immigration Court: A Game-Changing Strategy

close-up motion to dismiss

As immigrants face daunting challenges in legal proceedings, knowing the tools available to defend their rights is crucial. In this episode of the Empowered Immigrant Podcast, hosted by immigration lawyer Otis Landerholm, we explore the concept of a motion to dismiss and its significance in immigration court.

What is a Motion to Dismiss?

When immigration authorities initiate deportation proceedings against an individual, they issue a Notice to Appear outlining the alleged violations. This document serves as the foundation for the case. However, if you believe the government's claims are incorrect or if circumstances have changed, you can file a motion to dismiss.

How Can a Motion to Dismiss Help You?

  • Correcting Errors: If Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has inaccurately stated your immigration status or if you possess valid documentation, a motion to dismiss can rectify these errors and halt deportation proceedings.
  • Changing Priorities: In some cases, political shifts or changes in deportation priorities may lead the government to reconsider pursuing removal actions. By jointly filing a motion to dismiss with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), you can request the closure of your case.

Benefits of Dismissing a Case

While a motion to dismiss doesn't guarantee legal status or work authorization, it does offer significant advantages:

  • Case Closure: If successful, your deportation case will be closed, alleviating the immediate threat of removal.
  • Strategic Decision: Whether to pursue a motion to dismiss depends on the specifics of your case and your long-term immigration goals. Consulting with an experienced immigration attorney can help you determine the best course of action.


Navigating immigration court proceedings can be complex and daunting, but understanding your rights and available strategies is essential. Whether you're facing deportation or seeking clarity on your immigration status, the team at Landerholm Immigration APC is here to provide expert guidance and support.

Thank you for joining us today. Remember, knowledge is power, and with the right resources and advocacy, your American dream is within reach.

For personalized assistance with your immigration case, don't hesitate to reach out to us. We're committed to fighting for your rights and ensuring a brighter future for you and your family.

Until next time, this is Otis Landerholm signing off. Stay informed, stay empowered, and never give up on your dreams.

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