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EOIR proposes to mandate electronic filing, change procedures on law student representation

  1. Date Announced

    Dec. 4, 2020

    EOIR issues a proposed rule that would expand and make permanent its pilot program for electronic records. Once implemented, immigration courts will be creating an "eROP" (electronic record of proceedings) upon the filing of a Notice to Appear (NTA) with the court, and the eROP will thereafter be the official court record. Appeals and motions filed with the BIA will be treated similarly.

    The change in process will apply only to cases initiated after the eROP process has been implemented (except for those cases which participated in the voluntary pilot program and may continue participating voluntarily). Once enacted, electronic filing will be mandatory for represented cases and voluntary for unrepresented cases (with court staff scanning filings made by pro se respondents). Also, DHS will be required to file the NTA electronically.

    The proposed rule would also require filings from law students and law graduates to be made through an attorney or accredited representative who is registered with EOIR. It would also require the supervising attorney or accredited representative to enter an official appearance as counsel and to accompany the law student or law graduate to all immigration court appearances (as opposed to the current practice, which leaves both appearance and attendance to the discretion of the judge or BIA).

    The proposed rule also discusses how service on parties will operate, how system outages will be handled, the rules for signatures, and the process for electronic fee payment.

    [ID #1206]

    View Policy Document
Status: Proposed
Subject Matter: Hearings and Adjudications
Agencies Affected: EOIR

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