If you have been served a Notice to Appear, then
deportation has begun, and you are being summoned to a Master Calendar hearing. This
is a preliminary hearing in an immigration court. Remember, you have the
right to an attorney. If you have an immigration lawyer on your side,
he or she can answer the questions, though you must still appear. At this
hearing, there will be no rulings on either your applications or charges.
It lays the groundwork for the individual hearing. The individual hearing
is where you would have to present evidence to back up your case. For
example, this could mean that if you are applying for asylum, you would
have to prove that you have a credible fear of persecution in your native country.
When you get your
Notice to Appear for the Master Calendar hearing, you will be told when and where it is.
You should aim to appear early. If you do not attend this hearing or show
up late, the court can order your deportation because you are not there,
or your applications can be denied. Do be aware that you might have to
wait several hours for a hearing, however. The hearing itself probably
lasts 5 to 20 minutes. As far as the documents you will need, your lawyer
can explain what would be best for your case. Usually, you will need items
such as a passport, driver's license, and your Notice to Appear, in
addition to other documentation. Your attorney can detail other ways for
you to prepare.
When you appear at court, there will be other people in the room at the
same time, as multiple hearings are scheduled for the same time slot.
When it is your turn, the judge will announce your name and Alien Registration
Number, and you and your attorney will come before the judge. If necessary,
you can ask for an interpreter, which the court can provide. You can ask
for another interpreter if, for example, he or she does not accurately
The judge will ask you for some basic information, such as your name, address,
and any languages in which you are fluent. Then the judge will look over
your charges. You will get the chance to admit or deny them. This is also
an opportunity to correct anything wrong in the related information, such
as the date of entry into the U.S., your country of origin, etc. You will
also announce the claim you want accepted, whether it is for asylum, withdrawal
adjustment of status, etc.
To end the hearing, the judge will schedule when you need to submit certain
documents. Another Master Calendar hearing may be scheduled, or the judge
may set the date for an individual merits hearing. You will leave with
a notice for the next hearing. If you need more time than the deadlines
you are given, then you can give reasons for an extension of deadline
and/or different dates for the hearings.
Even though this hearing is only a brief beginning, it is still a vital
part of your immigration process. As with any issue, having an experienced
immigration lawyer with you can be of immeasurable benefit. If you have
any questions, then we have more than 50 years of immigration experience
with which we are ready to help you. If you or a loved one needs help
with any immigration matter, please do not hesitate to
contact Robert Brown LLC. Time is of the essence. You need to act quickly to defend your rights.
Call a North Carolina immigration attorney as soon as possible.