Sun. May 19th, 2024

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Can you sue the US government if your immigration process is delayed?

3 min read
Immigration Support

Immigration process: Lawsuits against the government for immigration delays and other immigration issues became prolific during the Trump government. We needed to look for the intervention of the courts repeatedly and overwhelmingly, quite effectively. But, delays litigations have a unique set of parameters that should be understood.

Fundamentally, is litigation against delays in the immigration process a suitable choice for your case? The answer is maybe it is, yet be aware of the relevant factors, including the uncertainty of the outcome and costs included.

To place matters in context, as legal advisors, for decades, we as of now have been writing briefs for US immigration agencies but planning for the courts. That’s what great lawyering requires. In delay litigation, we go a step further when we write for the courts. We are drawing the attention of the government attorneys to the weaknesses in the government’s position. These attorneys understand that it is best for their clients, the government, and our legal system to settle meritorious lawsuits quickly rather than engaging in unnecessary litigation.

Lawsuit Settlement | Immigration process

The essential reason and hope to file a claim are to impel a settlement with the government for a good result. However, if we do not settle the case, a lawsuit could drag on for a year or two, nullifying our goal of haste.

Strangely, a settlement can be reached only if a litigant is committed to fighting tenaciously and furiously till the final decision. Thusly, however, we desire to settle, we must be committed to contesting.


The greatest hurdle in winning a claim against the government is the Constitutional regulation theory of separation of powers. Courts could do without interfering with the processes of a co-equal part of the system, the government. US courts will further defer especially to the discretionary decisions made by the government. Unless there is a clear violation of law, policy, or logic.

Whenever litigation is filed and challenged, the government typically contends that its processing delays are not unreasonable. Due to their current workload and the specific facts of each case. An adjunct argument routinely advanced is that a successful litigant is unfairly advantaged ahead of different candidates who have been waiting just as long or even longer.

Further, a practical impediment is the vulnerability of the courts’ adjudicative approach. This approach is different in various US districts and varies from judge to judge within the same region. Luckily, it is easy to proactively research these matters with online legal resources.

When you choose to litigate, it usually is advantageous to retain lawyers willing to address you on a flat fee basis. Hourly charges are highly unpredictable. The budget could be $10,000 or more even for a settled lawsuit.


Ideally, an exemplary claim should be settled within a couple of days and without contest. However, that isn’t always so in the real world. The government might decide to fight back because they have confidence in the strength of their legitimate position. At different times, the government opposition is disproportionately vigorous. To prevent the creation of a flood of litigation or due to other similar systemic policies that might not need to do much with a particular case.

[Five new steps the United States has taken to help immigrants]

Note also that a delays-related claim, even if won, does not guarantee approval of your case. All we can look for is a faster decision – approval or refusal. We can’t usually insist upon a favorable decision, and approval.

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