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H.R. 913 (115th): Immigrant Detainee Legal Rights Act

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Feb 7, 2017.


Immigrant Detainee Legal Rights Act

This bill directs the Department of Justice to:

establish within the Executive Office for Immigration Review an Office of Legal Access Programs to administer a system of legal orientation programs to make immigration proceedings more efficient by educating aliens regarding administrative procedures and legal rights under U.S. immigration law and to establish other programs to assist in providing aliens access to legal information; and submit a plan to Congress that includes a schedule to develop and deploy legal orientation programs for all detainees. The legal orientation programs shall:

provide programs to assist detained aliens in making decisions regarding their removal and eligibility for relief from removal in order to increase efficiency s in immigration proceedings and federal custody processes and to improve access to legal services; ensure that programs and written notice of rights are available in English and the five most common native languages spoken by the detainees held in custody at that location during the preceding fiscal year; and identify unaccompanied alien children, aliens with a serious mental disability, and other particularly vulnerable aliens for right to counsel considerations. Such programs may provide services to detained aliens in specified immigration (detention and removal) and asylum proceedings.

The Department of Homeland Security shall establish procedures: (1) that ensure that legal orientation programs are available for all detained aliens within five days of arrival into custody; and (2) to inform such aliens of the basic procedures of immigration hearings, their rights relating to those hearings, information that may deter such aliens from filing frivolous legal claims, and a contact list of potential legal resources and providers.