The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) was created on January 9, 1983, through an internal Department of Justice (DOJ) reorganization which combined the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA or Board) with the Immigration Judge function previously performed by the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) (now part of the Department of Homeland Security). Besides establishing EOIR as a separate agency within DOJ, this reorganization made the Immigration Courts independent of INS, the agency charged with enforcement of Federal immigration laws. The Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO) was added in 1987. In 2013, EOIR observed its 30th anniversary.
EOIR is also separate from the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices in the DOJ Civil Rights Division and the Office of Immigration Litigation in the DOJ Civil Division.
As an office within the Department of Justice, EOIR is headed by a Director who reports directly to the Deputy Attorney General. Its headquarters are located in Falls Church, Virginia, about 10 miles from downtown Washington, DC.
Office of the Director
Board of Immigration Appeals
Office of the Chief Immigration Judge
Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer
Office of the General Counsel
Office of Management Programs
Office of Planning, Analysis & Technology
EOIR is responsible for adjudicating immigration cases. Specifically, under delegated authority from the Attorney General, EOIR interprets and administers federal immigration laws by conducting immigration court proceedings, appellate reviews, and administrative hearings. EOIR is committed to providing fair, expeditious, and uniform application of the nation's immigration laws in all cases.
EOIR's primary mission is to adjudicate immigration cases in a careful and timely manner, including cases involving detained aliens, criminal aliens, and aliens seeking asylum as a form of relief from removal, while ensuring the standards of due process and fair treatment for all parties involved. In support of this mission, EOIR has identified certain goals and initiatives intended to:
- Increase productivity and timeliness of case processing by setting appropriate standards, streamlining procedures, and implementing staff-generated recommendations.
- Implement the case processing goals of the Institutional Hearing Program, rendering a final decision in each criminal alien case prior to the alien's release from incarceration.
- Improve customer service by providing easier access to information through expanded use of technology (e.g., automated telephone systems and Internet).