Unreasonable Processing Delays for Naturalization
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for naturalization applications to involve substantial delays. Oftentimes, the cause of the delay is not the fault of the alien seeking to naturalize. Delays can occur because of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services backlogs, mistaken background check information or simply a misplaced file. Delays can last more than three years in some cases.
Many aliens seeking naturalization are not aware that they have the right to contest an unreasonable delay and force the U.S. Government to adjudicate the case. Aliens experiencing an unreasonable delay in the processing of their naturalization application may pursue a Mandamus Action against the government. A mandamus action is a lawsuit against the U.S. Government asking a federal judge to take over jurisdiction of the case and grant citizenship to the alien. A delay of more than 120 days from the date of the naturalization interview/examination is deemed unreasonable under 8 U.S.C. § 1446. Once the 120 days has expired, the alien may proceed with a mandamus action.
Many aliens are leery about suing the Government in a mandamus action, because they are afraid the government might deny the naturalization application out of revenge. This should not be a concern, because once the mandamus action is filed, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services no longer has jurisdiction over the case. A federal judge has jurisdiction to decide whether to grant or deny the naturalization application, and USCIS has no influence over the judge's decision. If the alien is eligible to naturalize and not barred for any reason, the federal judge will approve the application.
Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. has substantial experience and success with mandamus actions. Contact Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. today to schedule a confidential consultation so that you can better understand if a mandamus action is right for you.
How Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. can help you: We have worked with many naturalization applicants to get their applications approved in a timely fashion. There are several strategies we can pursue in order to move your naturalization application through the administrative process. We work with Congressional representatives and Immigration liaisons and, if necessary, we file lawsuits against the federal government.
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How Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. Can Help
The naturalization process can be difficult and risky. Oftentimes, it is possible to determine whether the application will be granted prior to filing. Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. can help you determine whether it is worthwhile for you to file a naturalization application or whether there is a risk of deportation and denial. Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. will review your case thoroughly before filing, help you file the application and attend your naturalization interview with you. Similarly, if your naturalization application was recently denied, you may be entitled to an appeal. Contact Nelson & Nuñez, P.C. to discuss your case.