A Notice to Appear (NTA) is an official document that states that the United States government is initiating removal proceedings against an immigrant. If you received one, you will be instructed to appear in immigration court. However, shockingly, ICE has not always told people the date and time of their court date within their NTA.
A Notice to Appear without a date and time is sometimes referred to as a ‘dummy notice’. Not only are they confusing, but the Supreme Court has also ruled these dummy notices to be defective. Below, our Los Angeles deportation defense attorney explains what you should do if you received a Notice to Appear without a date or time included on it.
Supreme Court: A Dummy Notice is a Defective Notice
In June of 2018, a dummy notice case made it all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States. In the case of Pereira v. Sessions, the nation’s highest court ruled against the government. Essentially, the court determined that a Notice to Appear at a removal proceeding that does not designate a specific date, time, or place is defective. As such, such a notice does not end the continuous period of residence nor does it deny an immigrant from seeking the possible cancellation of their deportation.
How to Deal With a Defective Notice to Appear
Getting a Notice to Appear is deeply stressful, even frightening. The process can be especially challenging and frustrating if the NTA did not include a date, time, or location. You need to know how to respond in this situation. To protect your rights, you should:
- Not Ignore the Notice to Appear: First and foremost, you should never ignore a Notice to Appear. It is not going to make the problem go away, even if the notice was defective. You still need to be prepared to respond.
- Watch for Additional Correspondence: In some cases, a defective NTA will quickly be followed by an NTA that contains relevant information. If you have received a Notice to Appear, you should keep a close eye out for additional correspondence from immigration officials.
- Speak to an Experienced Immigration Lawyer: It is important to remember that a Notice to Appear is not a deportation order. You have rights. After receiving one without a date, time, it is recommended that should contact an experienced Los Angeles immigration attorney immediately. Your attorney will help you navigate the process and build a defense to deportation.
Discuss Your Case a Deportation Defense Lawyer in Southern California
At the Law Office of Joshua L. Goldstein, PC, our California deportation lawyer has more than fifteen years of experience handling all types of immigration law matters. If you or your loved one received a Notice to Appear without a date, it is imperative that you seek professional legal representation. To set up a strictly private initial consultation with a deportation lawyer, please call us today at (213) 262-2000.