How long for a Judge to communicate decision on a Political Asylum case?
September 17, 2009 11:22 AM   Subscribe

ImmigrationLawFilter: How long for a Judge to communicate decision on a Political Asylum case?

My friend and his family have been defending his Political Asylum case on Immigration Court in Miami for several years now. They had the final hearing a few months ago and the judge promise to issue his decision in 90 days (I don’t know if he said in, within or after 90 days). Well, the 90 days are over (a couple of weeks ago) and there is no decision. Their attorney contacted the judge assistant and was told that there was no decision yet and there is nothing she can do but wait. I know Judges sometimes doesn’t want to tell the answer on the spot to avoid dealing with parties reactions but why would he ask for 90 days and also is there a specific amount of time a judge has to issue and communicate his final decision in this kind of cases.
posted by 3dd to Law & Government (4 answers total)
Why don't you ask your attorney about whether there is a deadline? Don't you think he'd know better than us?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:41 AM on September 17, 2009

Response by poster: The attorney says Judge can take as long as he wants to make and communicate his decision, but thanks for the suggestion Chocolate Pickle
posted by 3dd at 12:23 PM on September 17, 2009

So, you already had your answer, you just don't trust your attorney? Why is he/she still your attorney, if you don't think they are competent?

The judge hasn't made his decision, and is sitting on it, cacklin' like some mad scientist at your misery. He isn't trying to avoid you. He hasn't made his decision yet. Is that because he's carefully considering some arcane point of law? Maybe. Is it because he's busy as hell, and there are more pressing cases on his docket than yours? Probably. Enjoy the fact that the asylum seeker isn't being deported sooner than later, if you think the decision isn't going to go your way.
posted by No1UKnow at 1:09 PM on September 17, 2009

Best answer: Yep, I think the judge can take as long as he wants. I can't say for certain about the immigration courts but I used to work for a federal court and judges had no deadlines as to when they had to write opinions or make decisions, although if it was taking them too long, like months, there would be internal pressure from, like, the chief judge or the Clerk of the court to get it done. But those were usually complex cases involving lots of people, issues, etc. An easy case would be completed immediately with a quick one-page order.

The reason judges often take so long is because they or their law clerks are drafting the opinion, looking up law, reading old cases, circulating the draft opinions to other judges for feedback, and also hearing new cases at the same time, which further backs up their workload. Your judge probably just gave you an estimate of 90 days, but it was just an estimate.

I once had one of the parties of a case call me and ask if I knew the outcome of his case. I did, even though the official order had not yet been sent out to the parties. I told him on the phone, but in your case, the judge may still be working on the decision.
posted by That takes balls. at 1:14 PM on September 17, 2009

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