New fast track asylum system

Within 60 days the Administration will implement a new policy of having asylum cases handled by asylum officers instead of immigration judges. The policy was submitted for public review in mid 2021. It will take some time to hire up in order to have an impact, as there are 670,000 pending asylum cases. In FY 2021 perhaps 60,000 cases were resolved.

This new system is supposed to resolve an application within six months, as opposed to years. I have noted before that the backlog problem is similar to the border control problems on the Mexican border and the Special Immigrant Visas for Afghan translators: the growth of an elephantine mass of legal processes which top executives in the State Department and DHS don’t really care much about compared to other priorities. (here and here.)

The expected elimination of Title 42 removals from the border will further add to the asylum application backlog.


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