You can help facilitate a good response from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals by following all the rules, meeting deadlines, and ensuring you have presented the strongest possible case to the court. A Ninth Circuit appeal may be your last shot to fight a denial for legal residence in the United States, so you have to make it count.
Follow these steps to make the most of your Ninth Circuit appeals process:
Start with a Notice of Appeal
After the immigration judge or state court has ruled against you, you can start the appeals process by sending a Notice of Appeal to your district court. A Notice of Appeal is required for “final judgments,” such as those in criminal cases, like unlawful residence in the U.S.
A Notice of Appeal must contain:
- Your name (name of the appellant)
- The decision you want to appeal
- The court you’d like to review that decision, which, in this case, would be the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
In general, you have 30 days from the date of the court ruling in question to file a Notice of Appeal with your district court to initiate the appeals process in the Ninth Circuit.
If you want to appeal a decision from the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), you must file a Petition for Review with the Ninth Circuit Court (not your district court).
Making sure you file the Notice of Appeal correctly can help you demonstrate your understanding of the process and your seriousness in appealing the decision, which may help in your appeal.
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File Your Petitions and Other Paperwork on Time
You should make sure your Notice of Appeal and other required paperwork are submitted in a timely manner. You must adhere to the deadlines, so you don’t lose your chance to appeal. But turning your paperwork in before or by the deadline also demonstrates your dedication to overturning this ruling, which may positively impact your case.
Write a Strong Brief
An appeal brief is one of the most important parts of the appeals process. It outlines all the vital information you need to prove that the immigration judge or other lower court was wrong in its ruling against you.
If you are handling your own appeal, you may write an informal appeal brief that includes:
- The date of the decision you want to appeal
- The actions you’ve taken after the decision, such as filing any additional motions
- The facts of your case, including the evidence you have to demonstrate that the judge misunderstood something in your case or got something wrong
- More information about your request from the district court or government agency
- More information about the decisions you want the Ninth Circuit to review
- Which law supports the decision you want to appeal for
- Any relevant case history
There is also a formal appeal brief that a lawyer would complete and file on your behalf, but this would only be filed if you have a lawyer helping you navigate the appeals process.
It’s so important to use the informal brief document provided by the Ninth Circuit, as it is formatted exactly how they want it. It also has multiple prompts to help you include all the necessary and relevant information you need to argue for the appeal.
You should present all the evidence, even evidence that the original judge didn’t hear, identify any laws that support your case, and write in an assertive and confident tone. Doing so can improve the chances of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals agreeing to review your case and even ruling in your favor.
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Prepare for and Appear at All Hearing Dates
If you are representing yourself in a Ninth Circuit appeal, you’ll need to prepare your own oral argument for when you appear in court or mediation. You must know your own case inside and out, be able to speak confidently and honestly about your case, and answer questions that may be uncomfortable or challenging. This can take a lot of time and practice.
You should also appear at all hearing dates that are scheduled to answer questions, provide evidence, and give your oral argument as necessary. Being prepared, confident, and knowledgeable of your case can influence whether your appeal is successful.
But again, the brief and the oral argument are incredibly important parts of the Ninth Circuit appeals process. It can be a big challenge even for the most experienced immigration lawyers. That’s why you should consider getting a lawyer to take the lead on your appeal.
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Work with an Immigration Lawyer Who Has Experience in the Ninth Circuit
An immigration lawyer will be better able to draft a strong brief and give a stellar oral argument. That’s because they understand the law, and they have practice in researching, writing legal arguments, and answering tough questions under pressure. You can best facilitate a good response from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals by working with a great immigration lawyer.
You can improve your chances even more by getting an immigration lawyer who was experience helping clients appeal decisions on deportation and denied status cases in the Ninth Circuit. While it’s not guaranteed that you’ll win your appeal, you can entrust an experienced Ninth Circuit appeals lawyer to use their knowledge of the process to anticipate challenges and solve issues more effectively.
We Can Help You with Your Ninth Circuit Appeal
The team at New Frontier Immigration Law has over 10 years of experience helping immigrants navigate the system confidently. Our founding attorney, Hillary Walsh, has experience representing clients in the Ninth Circuit, as well as in the Fifth and Sixth Circuits, state supreme courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Contact us today to schedule your strategic session with an immigration lawyer at our firm.