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AILA Tracks EOIR’s Historical Operational Status During Coronavirus Pandemic

This page tracks historical updates related to EOIR’s operational status during the coronavirus pandemic. Please note that this page is not updated in real time. For the latest information, AILA recommends that you check with the local AILA Chapter EOIR Liaisons as well as EOIR’s Operational Status page and EOIR’s Twitter account @DOJ_EOIR.

Overview | Individual Immigration Court Operational Status | Migrant Protection Protocols | BIA Operational Status | General Operational Status Updates | AILA Correspondence and Advocacy Resources | Litigation | Congressional Updates | Media Resources | Other Resources

COVID-19 Related Resources


Overview

Last updated January 11, 2021, at 2:30 pm (ET).

For additional resources, see EOIR’s webpage, EOIR's Twitter account @DOJ_EOIR, and EOIR's Facebook page. Also see EOIR’s Policy Memo 20-13: EOIR Practices Related to the COVID-19 Outbreak (6/11/2020) and information about filing by email with Immigration Courts and with the Board of Immigration Appeals.

Individual Immigration Court Operational Status

AILA is using the documents below to track the historical operational status for individual immigration courts. Please note that the individual pages are not updated in real time. For the latest information, AILA recommends that you check with the local AILA Chapter EOIR Liaisons as well as EOIR’s Operational Status page and EOIR’s Twitter account @DOJ_EOIR. If you would like to share additional updates about the operational status of an immigration court with AILA, please fill out this form.

Individual Immigration Court Operational Status

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Migrant Protection Protocols

For more information, see AILA’s Practice Alert on the DHS/DOJ Joint Statement Rescheduling MPP Hearings.

July 17, 2020

Click Here for More Updates

June 16, 2020

DHS and EOIR issued a joint statement postponing MPP hearings and in-person document service through, and including, July 17, 2020. DHS and EOIR anticipate the resumption of hearings on July 20, 2020. Also see EOIR’s tweet.

May 15, 2020

Law360, Trump Admin Tries To Clarify Muddled 'Remain In Mexico' Plan

“According to the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security confirmed the correct directions. The confusion arose after DHS issued a public statement May 10 saying that individuals with hearings dates up to June 22 should arrive a month later to receive new dates, only to have a DHS official tell a human rights nonprofit days later that migrants with some June dates should stick to their original dates.”

May 10, 2020

DHS and EOIR issued a joint statement noting the following adjustments to the temporary postponement of Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) hearings:

  • Beginning May 10, in-person document service will be suspended immediately until June 8.
  • All MPP hearings will remain postponed through, and including June 19. Individuals with a hearing date prior to June 22 should present themselves at the port of entry identified on their tear sheet one month later than the date indicated on their most recently noticed date.
  • For individuals with a hearing date of June 22 or after, there is no change in procedures and individuals should report as instructed on their tear sheets.

April 30, 2020

Joint DHS/EOIR Statement on MPP Rescheduling

  • DOJ and DHS have extended the temporary postponement of Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP). Hearings scheduled through, and including, June 1, 2020, will be rescheduled. As the departments continue to review conditions related to COVID-19, they will make further determinations as necessary in order to ensure that all MPP hearings can proceed as expeditiously as possible.
  • Through Monday, June 1, 2020, all individuals with MPP hearings should present themselves at port of entry indicated on their most recently noticed date to receive tear sheets and new hearing notices containing the dates of their rescheduled hearings.

April 28, 2020

The National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIJ) announced via Twitter on April 28, 2020, that “NAIJ has learned that MPP dockets will be suspended until at least May 15, 2020. No public announcement by EOIR.”

April 1, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on April 1, 2020, at 11:01 am (ET) that “Due to the pandemic and new CDC guidelines, MPP hearings scheduled through May 1, 2020, have been postponed. Individuals should present themselves on previously scheduled date to receive tear sheets and hearing notices with new hearing dates.” EOIR also linked to EOIR’s Operational Status page in the Tweet.

DHS and EOIR Postpone MPP Hearings Scheduled Through May 1, 2020

Due to continued circumstances related to COVID-19 and newly-issued guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security have determined to extend the temporary postponement of Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) hearings scheduled through Friday, May 1, 2020. All presently scheduled hearings will be rescheduled. The Departments will continually review conditions related to COVID-19 and will make further determinations as necessary in order to ensure that all MPP hearings can proceed as expeditiously as possible when appropriate.

Any individual with an MPP hearing date through Friday, May 1, 2020 should present themselves at their designated port of entry on their previously scheduled date to receive a tear sheet and hearing notice containing their new hearing dates.

March 23, 2020

Joint DHS/EOIR Statement on MPP Rescheduling:

Due to circumstances resulting from COVID-19, all Migrant Protection Protocol (MPP) master calendar and merit hearings presently scheduled through April 22 will be rescheduled. Neither the MPP program nor any hearings will be cancelled.

Any individual with an MPP hearing date through April 22 should present themselves at their designated port of entry on their previously scheduled date to receive a tear sheet and hearing notice containing their new hearing dates. DHS and EOIR are deeply committed to ensuring that individuals ‘have their day in court’ while also ensuring the health and safety of aliens, our frontline officers, immigration court professionals, and our citizens.

March 23, 2020

San Diego Union-Tribune reporter Kate Morrissey shared that CBP San Diego stated on a press call that there is a 48 hour suspension of MPP returnees crossing for court hearings that started the morning of March 23, 2020.

March 15, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 15, 2020, at 10:49 pm (ET) that “all non-detained aliens' master calendar hearings scheduled 03/16-04/10 are postponed. Usual operations for filings except Seattle. All other hearings proceeding.” After EOIR’s announcement, NAIJ tweeted “We have been told MPP is going forward.”

Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) Operational Status

August 21, 2020

The Board of Immigration of Appeals is expected to disable its temporary email addresses for filings on September 18, 2020, based on the Arlington Immigration Court resuming non-detained court hearings on July 20, 2020. Pursuant to EOIR’s Policy Memo 20-13: EOIR Practices Related to the COVID-19 Outbreak, email addresses for filings with the BIA and OCAHO will be deactivated within 60 days of the resumption of non-detained hearings by the Arlington Immigration Court.

June 11, 2020

See EOIR policy memo 20-13: EOIR Practices Related to the COVID-19 Outbreak, “The Board and OCAHO will deactivate their respective email filing systems developed during the COVID-19 outbreak within 60 days of the resumption of non-detained hearings by the Arlington Immigration Court.”

April 7, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on April 7, 2020, at 12:02 pm (ET) that “The BIA is now accepting certain filings by email. For guidelines and more information, please visit EOIR’s website.” EOIR also linked to a new page, Filing by Email – Board of Immigration Appeals in the Tweet. EOIR also sent this update via email on April 7, 2020, at 12:01 pm (ET).

Additional Updates:

General Operational Status Updates

September 4, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on September 4, 2020, at 9:04 am (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Sept. 25, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s webpage for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/
Click Here for More Updates

August 31, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on August 31, 2020, at 1:34 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Sept. 18, 2020."
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s web page for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/

August 24, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on August 24, 2020, at 11:45 am (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Sept. 11, 2020."
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s web page for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/

August 17, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on August 17, 2020, at 2:16 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Sept. 4, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/

August 10, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on August 10, 2020, at 12:14 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Aug. 21, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/.”

August 3, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on August 3, 2020, at 1:47 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, Aug. 21, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/.”

July 27, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on July 27, 2020, at 12:23 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, August 14, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/.”

July 20, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on July 20, 2020, at 12:51 pm (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, August 7, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website.”

July 6, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on July 6, 2020, at 11:27 am (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, July 24, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s web page for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://www.justice.gov/eoir/eoir-operational-status-during-coronavirus-pandemic."

June 29, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on June 29, 2020, at 11:56 am (ET):

  • (1/2) “As previously announced, certain immigration courts have resumed non-detained hearings. Hearings in non-detained cases at courts without an announced date are postponed through, and including, July 17, 2020.”
  • (2/2) “Visit EOIR’s web page for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website. https://portal.eoir.justice.gov/InfoSystem/.”

June 15, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on June 15, 2020, at 10:45 am (ET):

  • (1/3) “As previously announced, the Honolulu Immigration Court resumed non-detained hearings today. The Boston, Buffalo, Dallas, Hartford, Las Vegas, Memphis, and New Orleans Immigration Courts will resume non-detained hearings on June 29.”
  • (2/3) “Hearings in non-detained cases at all other immigration courts are postponed through, and including, Thursday July 2, 2020. All immigration courts will be closed Friday, July 3, 2020, in observance of Independence Day.”
  • (3/3) “Visit EOIR’s web page for the latest operational status of courts nationwide. For case specific information, please have the relevant alien registration number and call 800-898-7180 or visit our website.”

June 11, 2020

EOIR issued new policy memo 20-13: EOIR Practices Related to the COVID-19 Outbreak - June 11, 2020

June 9, 2020

On June 9, 2020, DOJ’s Justice Management Division (JMD) published the following memo on its website dated May 15, 2020: Department Framework for Returning to Normal Operations Status. This memo provides information about the phased reopening of immigration courts.

May 15, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on May 15, 2020, at 1:30 pm (ET), that “All hearings in non-detained cases are postponed through, and including, Friday June 12, 2020. Visit EOIR’s website for the latest operational status of courts nationwide." In the tweet, EOIR linked to its page, EOIR Operational Status During Coronavirus Pandemic. EOIR sent this update via email on May 15, 2020, at 1:13 pm (ET).

May 4, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on May 4, 2020, at 2:23 pm (ET) that “Hearings in non-detained cases are postponed through May 29, 2020. For the operational status of EOIR operations nationwide, please visit the EOIR website.” In the tweet, EOIR linked to its page, EOIR Operational Status During Coronavirus Pandemic. EOIR sent this update via email on May 4, 2020 at 2:22pm (ET).

April 21, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on April 21, 2020, at 8:30 am (ET) that "Hearings in non-detained cases are postponed through May 15, 2020." EOIR also sent this update via email on April 21, 2020, at 8:31 am (ET).

April 15, 2020

CNN: Justice Department employees told to wear face coverings in Common Areas – April 15, 2020

  • On April 15, 2020, Buzzfeed News reporter, Hamed Aleaziz, Tweeted the following: “James McHenry, the head of the country's immigration courts, told staffers today in an email that they should wear facemasks in DOJ facilities and that the agency was ordering ‘masks for employees who are continuing to report to the office, which should be available next week.’”

April 3, 2020

EOIR published a new policy memo on April 3, 2020, PM 20-11, containing updated policies for signatures on documents filed with the immigration courts and the Board of Immigration Appeals.

March 31, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 31, 2020, at 6:28 pm (ET) that “EOIR has established temporary email accounts for immigration courts nationwide to facilitate electronic filing for all parties while the rollout of the EOIR Court & Appeals System (ECAS) is delayed due to COVID-19.” The tweet linked to EOIR’s new page, Filing by Email.

  • EOIR replied to the above Tweet with the following: “Those who have already opted-in to ECAS should continue to use ECAS where it is available. Others who wish to utilize electronic filing may file through email as instructed below.”
  • EOIR replied to the above Tweet with the following: “Please note EOIR cannot provide technical support or confirm receipt of filings at this time.”
  • EOIR also sent this update via email on March 31, 2020, at 6:10 pm (ET).

March 30, 2020

The NAIJ Urgently Calls for Immediate Implementation of Required Health and Safety Measures for the Immigration Courts During the Coronavirus Pandemic – March 30, 2020

March 30, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 30, 2020, at 7:36 pm (ET) that “Hearings in non-detained cases are postponed through May 1, 2020." The Tweet linked to EOIR’s operational page. EOIR also sent this update via email on March 30, 2020 at 7:35 pm (ET).

March 26, 2020

EOIR Email Sent to Stakeholders Announcing New Listserv and the Latest Information on Current EOIR Operations (Sent on March 26, 2020, at 9:15 pm (ET)). See EOIR Statement on Current Operations (Sent on March 26, 2020 at 9:10pm ET).

March 24, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 24, 2020, at 7:51 pm (ET) that "Effective tomorrow, the below immigration courts reopen for the limited purpose of accepting filings. Parties are encouraged to file documents by mail, and there is no requirement that documents be filed in person. Non-detained hearings are still postponed.”

  • EOIR then replied to the above tweet that “Any filings due during their closures should be filed by March 30. Filing deadlines after March 30 remain in effect subject to the discretion of the immigration judge.”
  • EOIR then replied to the above tweet with the following: “COURT LIST: Atlanta – Peachtree, Houston – Gessner, Los Angeles – Olive, Memphis, New York – Broadway, Sacramento.”

Deleted EOIR Tweet: EOIR initially announced via Twitter on March 24, 2020, at 6:12 pm (ET) that “Effective tomorrow, the below immigration courts reopen for the limited purpose of accepting filings. All filings due during the closures and today are now due. Due dates for future filings remain. Non-detained hearings are still being postponed.” See Law360 article, Chaos, Confusion Reign As Immigration Courts Stay Open.

March 22, 2020

On March 22, 2020 at 6:20 pm (ET), ICE communicated to AILA that, generally, only those conducting in-person contact visits need personal protective equipment (PPE) (UNLESS a particular facility has more restrictive rules), but that AILA members should still check with the facility on their individual policy.

March 21, 2020

ICE added language to its COVID-19 guidance stating that “ICE/ERO now requires all legal visitors, CODELs, and STAFFDELs to provide and wear personal protective equipment (PPE) (disposable vinyl gloves, N-95 or surgical masks, and eye protection) while visiting any detention facility.” Local ICE offices have reached out to some chapters directly with similar guidance and have stated that visitors will have to provide the PPE themselves. It appears that this requirement will apply to courts operated by DHS and located in detention centers. There is no indication at this time that this requirement would apply to courts operated by EOIR and outside of detention centers.

March 19, 2020

The National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIJ) shared a letter from EOIR on Twitter that provided the following guidance:

  • At the time of the issuance of the Policy Memorandum (PM) 20-10, Immigration Court Practices During the Declared National Emergency Concerning the COVID-19 Outbreak, the Department of State (DOS) was applying their risk indicators, including health, to all countries on an individual basis. At that time, the DOS also had in place a Global Health Advisory related to the pandemic outbreak of COVID-19. As the DOS has now abandoned the individualized evaluation of the risk indicators in recognition of the global nature of a pandemic, the travel advisories referenced in PM 20-10 are no longer applicable to analysis as to whether an individual is permitted in EOIR space.
  • At this time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) still provide a country-specific analysis regarding level of risk. That list of CDC Level 3 countries is still applicable to PM 20-10.

March 18, 2020

EOIR issued a memo (PM-20-10, Immigration Court Practices During the Declared National Emergency Concerning the COVID-19 Outbreak) with guidance on immigration court practices during the COVID-19 outbreak, including a note that effective 3/18/20, EOIR deferred hearings for all non-detained cases until 4/10/20. On March 19, 2020, EOIR issued an addendum to PM-2010.

March 18, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 18, 2020, at 4:42 pm (ET) that “Emergency filing locations for the closed immigration courts are for emergencies only. Filings due during the closures will be considered timely filed if received on the courts next business day. Deadlines for open courts remain.”

March 17, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 17, 2020, at 11:55 pm (ET) that “Effective March 18 all non-detained hearings postponed: these immigration courts closed: ATL Peachtree, Charlotte; HOU Gessner; Louisville; Memphis; NYC, Broadway & Fed Plaza; Newark; Sacramento; LOS – Olive. Check website for updates.” Also see EOIR issued a statement released on March 18, 2020, at 12:30 am (ET).

March 17, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 17, 2020, at 11:52 pm (ET) that “The case info hotline and online application may not be updated for cases postponed due to operational changes during the pandemic. Information will be updated upon issuance of a new hearing notice. Court documents remain the official source of info.”

March 15, 2020

EOIR announced via Twitter on March 15, 2020, at 10:49 pm (ET) that “all non-detained aliens' master calendar hearings scheduled 03/16-04/10 are postponed. Usual operations for filings except Seattle. All other hearings proceeding.” After EOIR’s announcement, NAIJ tweeted “We have been told MPP is going forward.”

March 13, 2020

Yahoo News reporter Caitlin Dickson shared a statement from an EOIR spokesperson on EOIR’s response to COVID-19.

EOIR Comment – March 13, 2020

March 12, 2020

EOIR Director James McHenry sent AILA's EOIR Liaison Committee the following statement:

The Department of Justice continues to work closely with the Vice President's Task Force, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and State and Local Government leaders regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. Attorneys with cases in immigration court have longstanding information readily available to them about the filing of motions to continue, which immigration judges will adjudicate based on the unique facts of each case and relevant situation to include active illnesses of all varieties. Although the operational situation may change as new information is received, immigration courts will continue to address cases, including any motions to continue, in accordance with the applicable law. Any changes to the operating status of a court will be communicated to staff, respondents, and the public.

March 12, 2020

National Association of Immigration Judges Asks EOIR to Suspend Non-Detained Master Calendar Dockets in Light of COVID-19

March 10, 2020

On March 10, 2020, at 1:47 pm (ET), NAIJ tweeted that “The posters are going up! Thank you everyone who retweeted and commented. This is just one example of why the immigration court should be independent from @TheJusticeDept. We need #JudicialIndependence to #ProtectDueProcess. Please follow us on Twitter.”

For more information see CNN article, Justice Department backtracks on removing CDC coronavirus posters from courtrooms

March 9, 2020

On March 9, 2020, at 7:01 pm (ET), NAIJ tweeted that “EOIR has ordered immigration court staff to remove CDC posters designed to slow spread of coronavirus. No, this is not a parody account.”

March 9, 2020

National Association of Immigration Judges Provides Guidance to Judges on COVID-19 and the Immigration Courts

National Association of Immigration Judges Correspondence to EOIR Regarding Coronavirus

AILA Correspondence and Advocacy Resources

Litigation

Congressional Updates

Media Resources

Other Resources

Cite as AILA Doc. No. 20051400.