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When you receive a final decision in your immigration case that goes against you, you can seek to appeal that bad decision. But, alternatively, instead of seeking to appeal that decision, you can seek a Motion to Reopen (or a Motion to Reconsider) your immigration case.
A motion to reopen is a request to reopen your case after a final decision has been made in your case. The motion to reopen asks that your case be reopened based on new facts which are discovered or based on a change in your circumstances since the date your last hearing took place. In general, a motion to reopen must be filed within 90 days of the final administrative order. However, there are exceptions where certain motions to reopen may be filed beyond the 90 day period since the final administrative order.
A motion to reconsider requests a new determination based on errors of fact or law in the prior order. For example, in a motion to reconsider, you may ask the court to reconsider its prior decision based on a different legal argument or a change in the law. In general, a motion to reconsider must be filed within 30 days of the final administrative order.
Please note that there may be some of you who may have received an order of removal from the Immigration Judge, but you did not appear in court that day to receive that order of removal. In other words, if the Immigration Judge ordered your removal in your absence, you received something called an in absentia removal order.
A special type of motion to reopen may be used to try to reopen your in absentia removal order. This is called a motion to rescind and reopen in absentia order. A motion to rescind and reopen in absentia order based on a lack of notice of your hearing can be filed at anytime. There is no deadline by which this motion needs to be filed if it is based on your argument that you never received notice of your hearing. Alternatively, a motion to reopen in absentia order based on exceptional circumstances needs to be filed within 180 days of the order of removal.
Please contact the Law Office of Steve Bae today, so that we may provide you a detailed and personalized representation in your motion to reopen and/or motion to reconsider.