The volume of work can be overwhelming. Some of our judges carry caseloads of 5,000 cases or more, usually with limited support staff. Because we work for the Justice Department, we are directed how to arrange our dockets and micromanaged about how much time we spend on cases. Beginning in October of last year, judges were ordered to complete 700 cases each year or risk a less-than-satisfactory performance evaluation, which can cost a judge his or her job. This is not how a court should be run. Attorney General William P. Barr told Congress this week that he is hoping to boost the number of judges in our courtrooms from around 425 to 535 over the next few years and for a commensurate boost in lawyers and clerks. We desperately need the help.Find out more about what it’s going to take to reform the immigration legal process at the Washington Post.
Dana Leigh Marks has been an immigration judge in San Francisco since 1987, and is president emerita of the National Association of Immigration Judges. In the Washington Post, Judge Marks writes about what it’s going to take to fix the overwhelmed immigration legal system: