The Department of Justice (DOJ) has reportedly set quotas for immigration judges for the first time, requiring them to close a certain number of cases per year.
The Wall Street Journal on Monday reported that the DOJ notified judges late last week that they will be evaluated based on how quickly they close immigration cases. The change is intended to speed up the process and clear the backlog of cases in the immigration courts.
Judges will be required to complete 700 cases per year, and to see fewer than 15 percent of their decision returned by a higher court, the Journal reported. Other requirements were issued pertaining to completing cases quickly after a hearing date.
The new protocol will go into effect on Oct. 1, the Journal reported.
Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsOvernight Hillicon Valley — Apple issues security update against spyware vulnerability Stanford professors ask DOJ to stop looking for Chinese spies at universities in US Overnight Energy & Environment — Democrats detail clean electricity program MORE and other officials say delays in immigration courts have led to a backlog in processing individuals for deportation.
Immigration attorneys and the immigration judges’ union told the newspaper the new process could lead to expedited cases at the expense of waiting for all of the evidence to be presented in a defendant’s favor.
The changes to immigration courts are the latest in a series of efforts from the Trump administration to crack down on immigration.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement has ratcheted up its activity in arresting and deporting individuals in the country illegally since President TrumpDonald TrumpOvernight Defense & National Security — The Pentagon's deadly mistake Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Interior returns BLM HQ to Washington France pulls ambassadors to US, Australia in protest of submarine deal MORE took office.
Trump on Sunday called on Republicans in the Senate to pass tougher immigration laws using the so-called nuclear option, which would allow the chamber to pass legislation with a simple majority.