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Immigration Clinic Update

Friday, June 21, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Emily Ngara
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Immigration ClinicThe UDC Clarke School of Law Immigration & Human Rights Clinic represents non-citizens in the Arlington Immigration Court, which hears all the cases of non-citizens living in Virginia and the District of Columbia who the government is actively seeking to remove from the United States. This includes individuals detained in the three immigration detention facilities in Virginia, who appear at hearings via teleconference.

These individuals include lawful permanent residents with certain criminal convictions, individuals who have entered without inspection, those who have overstayed their visas, unaccompanied minors, individuals fleeing persecution in their home countries, and those who are in violation of the terms of their visas.

The Clinic specializes in representing detained and non-detained individuals with criminal convictions who seek relief from removal, and in assisting individuals with defensive asylum claims. Students conduct client interviews, counsel clients, and ensure that the client remains the driving force of the litigation.

Students often drive several hours to work with their clients. Students also engage in fact investigation. They: gather supporting evidence and country conditions reports; draft all litigation-related documents including motions, affidavits, and briefs; communicate with opposing counsel; and they argue their clients’ cases before the Arlington Immigration Court.

Recently, the Clinic has expanded its services to including assisting LGBT individuals seeking asylum in the United States, and to assist non-citizen crime victims with applying for "U Visas," which are available to the victims of certain crimes who cooperate with law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime.

The Clinic also represents individuals to appeal removal orders before the Board of Immigration Appeals and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, when appropriate. Examples of issues the Clinic has raised on appeal include violations of due process, statutory misinterpretation, and novel issues of law which have not been addressed by the Board.


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