Motion to Permit Telephonic Appearance of Counsel – Immigration


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What is a Motion for Telephonic Appearance

The Motion for Telephonic Appearance is a legal document filed with the court requesting that a party be granted permission to appear telephonically rather than in person at the hearing.

If your client is in a detention facility they may not be able to appear in person and would need this document to ask the judge to meet virtually. In this document you will need to explain why the client can not reasonably be in court on a specific date.

Some reasons may include health, distance to court, major schedule conflicts, or a personal appearance may be unnecessary due to a short return hearing 15 minutes). If you do not hear back from a judge then you are still required to show up in court.

What Happens at an Individual Hearing Immigration Court?

The individual hearing is your opportunity to present evidence and testimony supporting your eligibility for immigration status. A family relationship, a fear of harm in your home country, or time spent in the United States could be the basis of your application.

This may take one or many hearings. Evidence and witnesses may also be presented by the government attorney. The judge will then approve or deny your request, whether verbally or in writing. If your application is denied, you can always appeal the judge’s decision.

How do I Prepare for an Immigration Individual Hearing?

To prepare for a hearing you must gather all of your documentation and evidence. How the hearing is run is on a case by case basis, your specific judge will decide the order.

Generally the hearing will start with an opening statement and end with a closing statement. The evidence and any objections will be presented in the middle. There will be a lot of questions back and forth so make sure you have practiced your answers and know what points you would like to make.

How do I Request to Show Telephonically?

To attend court via telephone you will need to submit a request letter asking permission. In this letter provide the details on why you cannot be at court. There are a few acceptable reasons for not appearing in person. Distance to court, health or major schedule conflict.

A request can be sent by fax or mail. When asking to appear telephonically you should file in a timely manner before the court date. Be sure to include all documentation for the reasons you would like a telephonic appearance.

How Do You Address a Judge Over the Phone?

If you’ve never been to court before, it can be intimidating. If you’re going to court, you might be worried about what to wear, where to sit, and how to approach the judge. You may dread the whole process because of worries like these.

The judge should always be referred to as “You Honor”. This does not apply to any other person who is not an actual judge. When in court no matter how you appear be sure to speak clearly and loudly. This way the information is communicated effectively. Never interrupt the judge and remember to keep your explanations short and direct.

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