Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA)

The Board of Immigration Appeals in the part of the EOIR that checks over the decisions of the Immigration Courts and certain decisions made by USCIS. The BIA is an administrative appellate body within the United States Department of Justice. BIA decisions over a case are usually the final administrative actions in removal proceedings, unless their decisions are appealed over to a U.S. Court of Appeals.

The BIA has the option of backing the decision of the Immigration Judge or and reverse or remand the Judge’s decision

BIA has jurisdiction beyond just removal proceedings. BIA can review decisions made by USCIS on petitions. However, if the BIA affirms the denial of a petition made by USCIS, then further action would have to be directed to the Federal District Court, as opposed to the Court of Appeals.

As of now, there are twenty-six volumes of BIA precedent decisions which we can connect you to through links on this page. There are also links for unpublished BIA decisions, which could be used to reference to help strengthen your case.

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Justice provides a manual online to help those appearing before the BIA. The BIA allows for certain BIA-recognized individuals who are not attorneys to represent clients requesting an appeal.

The Board of Immigration Appeals is comprised of member judges chosen by the U.S. Attorney General and the number of judges serving at a time varies as a result of resignations, retirements, and new appointments, but according to the law at the present time there may only be a maximum of fifteen Board Members.  Many of the decisions the BIA makes are made by panels made up of three Board Members, nonetheless there are times when only one Board Member has the only say in the decision of a case. The Board of Immigration Appeals is situated in Falls Church, Virginia.

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