What is a Master Calendar Hearing?

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What is a Master Calendar Hearing?

Hello everyone. This is attorney Lauren McClure from Kriezelman Burton & Associates back again to explain some common terms and abbreviations used in the immigration world. Today we are going to be talking about master calendar hearings, also sometimes referred to as a master calendar hearing. You may have heard your immigration attorney mention this term or heard it in passing and not know what exactly it is. Don’t worry, that’s why I’m here to explain it today.

The master calendar hearing is the very first hearing in removal proceedings that occur before an immigration judge. Removal proceedings are often initiated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security against a person who is inside the United States and who has violated the immigration law in some way. This person receives a notice from the court to appear for a hearing on a certain date and time before an immigration judge. 

The master calendar hearing allows the immigration judge to discuss preliminary issues about the case and manage the court’s docket. The court requires that the individual appearing in front of the judge be very prepared because, at this hearing, the judge can either use this hearing to simply find out the status of the case and set another hearing date or make substantive decisions about the case. These decisions include issuing an order of removal or denying an application for relief. This hearing is crucial because it requires in-person attendance by the person who has been told to appear. If the persona has an attorney, the attorney is also required to appear in person in court, unless they have received special permission to appear over the phone. 

This hearing is used as the summoned individual’s opportunity to tell the court why they can or should remain in the United States, and the applications for the relief they plan to file to demonstrate that. This is also the hearing where a person can challenge the alleged immigration law violations if they are not, in fact, accurate or contain incorrect information.

Since the hearing is so important and often takes time for preparation and review, we recommend speaking to an attorney as soon as possible after scheduling a master calendar hearing. This will allow for the proper time for preparation and review of your case. If you are preparing for your master calendar hearing and are in need of an experienced immigration lawyer, please contact Kriezelman Burton & Associates to schedule a consultation. We are here to assist you in your immigration cases.

As always, be sure to check back soon for more information and options on immigration law.