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AG Barr issues Matter of M-S-, holding that an asylum-seeker who establishes credible fear is ineligible for bond, even when transferred to removal proceedings

  1. Date Announced

    April 16, 2019

    Asylum seekers in expedited removal proceedings who have established a credible fear of persecution or torture are no longer eligible for release on bond and will be detained until the disposition of their case. This decision by Attorney General Barr overrules a 14-year-old BIA precedent. It does not affect migrants who apply for asylum at a port of entry, but instead those who are apprehended after crossing into the United States without authorization.

    [ID #75]

    View Policy Document
  2. Effective Date of Change

    April 16, 2019
  3. Subsequent Action

    July 15, 2019 ICE ERO Interim Guidance for Implentation of Matter of M-S
  4. Subsequent Action

    In March 2020, Ninth Circuit upholds right of asylum seekers with positive credible fear determinations to bond hearings--see Padilla v. ICE, Ninth Circuit 19-35565. In January 2021, SCOTUS vacated and remanded for further consideration in light of Thuraissigiam.

Status: Final/Actual
Type of Action: Adjudication
Agencies Affected: EOIR ICE AG

Prior Policies

  • Asylum-seekers with a positive credible fear determination for persecution or torture were previously eligible for a custody redetermination hearing before an Immigration Judge.

    Matter of X-K-, 23 I&N Dec. 731 (BIA 2005)

Subsequent Actions

Other Documents


Commentary: American Immigration Lawyers Association, Human Rights First, National Immigrant Justice Center, Women’s Refugee Commission

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