Illinois Immigration and Deportation Attorneys
Skilled Representation for Non-U.S. Citizens at their Master Calendar Hearing in DuPage County
The first deportation hearing in the removal process is called the Master Calendar Hearing. When non-U.S. citizens receive a Notice to Appear (NTA) for this hearing, they must attend or face an automatic removal order and the inability to return to the U.S on any kind of visa for at least ten years. Among other things, the NTA advises the individual of their right to an attorney at their own expense. Though it is not required, it is strongly recommended that you speak with an experienced immigration attorney before your hearing, so you understand your rights and options.
At Mevorah Law Offices LLC, we have several decades of combined experience assisting immigrant clients with Master Calendar Hearings and all other immigration matters in the Greater Chicagoland area and Northern Illinois. Our award-winning lawyers are skilled in both immigration and criminal defense, and we have in-depth knowledge of USCIS, ICE, the state and federal judicial systems, and how these areas of the law intertwine. We put our unique blend of experience with criminal issues and immigration to work to give our clients a strong voice and skilled representation when they are facing deportation/removal proceedings.
What to Expect at your Master Calendar Hearing
At the Master Calendar Hearing, the judge familiarizes himself/herself with your case and deals primarily with preliminary issues, such as:
- Advising you of your right to a lawyer;
- Explaining the charges against you;
- Advising you of your right to present evidence, examine evidence presented by the government and cross-examine witnesses;
- Asking how you will plead; and
- Scheduling your Individual Hearing (if you plan to defend the charges against you).
If you have no defense, you may negotiate a voluntary removal (VR) in which you agree to return voluntarily to your home country in exchange for keeping your record free of a removal order. If you are defending the charges against you, you (and your attorney if you have one) explain why you believe you have a legal basis for remaining in the U.S. and/or obtaining a cancellation of removal, and provide an estimate of how much time you will need to present your case at your Individual Hearing. The Master Calendar Hearing is relatively short and typically takes no more than five to 20 minutes. However, there are usually many other hearings scheduled at the same time as yours, so counting wait time, you may expect to be in court for several hours.