Judge: Nonprofit legal groups can keep helping immigrants

In April, the Justice Department told the Seattle-based Northwest Immigrant Rights Project that it cannot provide certain legal assistance to immigrants unless it undertakes full, formal representation of them in court.

News Story (NATIONAL)

Associated Press (AP)
July 24, 2017

Tags: Deportation, Immigration Process

Organizations mentioned/involved: Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) (Washington State)


The organization — and similar groups around the U.S. who could be hindered by such a rule — said they don’t have the resources to do so, and that the order would force them to give up preparing motions and other documents on behalf of immigrants who represent themselves.

The DOJ’s decision meant that thousands of immigrants facing deportation, who aren’t entitled to a lawyer the way criminal defendants are, would have to go through the process without legal help, the groups said.

U.S. District Judge Richard Jones issued a temporary order blocking the Justice Department’s restrictions in May. On Monday, he issued a more formal preliminary injunction, saying the restrictions would violate the groups’ rights under the First Amendment of the Constitution.