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Office of the Chief Immigration Judge

IMMIGRATION COURT
Harlingen, Texas



Welcome to the Harlingen Immigration Court!

The Harlingen Immigration Court falls under the jurisdiction of the Office of the Chief Immigration Judge which is a component of the Executive Office for Immigration Review under the Department of Justice.

Our court has made a commitment to provide access to information through the Internet in order to service the needs of the public.

Our goal is to provide the most current and accurate information available to those needing to appear before an Immigration Judge and to provide this information in a user-friendly fashion.

Please note: The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) are separate organizations.


About the Court

The Harlingen Immigration Court conducts non-detained hearings and detained hearings by tele-video for the Port Isabel Detention centers.

Court Contacts

  • The sitting Immigration Judges in Harligen are:
  • Hon. Howard Achtsam
  • Hon. David Ayala
  • Hon. William C. Peterson
  • Hon. Eleazar Tovar

The Harlingen Immigration Court has an additional hearing location at the Port of Entry in Hidalgo, Texas. Hearings are conducted there once per quarter on the third Friday of the month. The Immigration Court proceedings for the Port of Entry at the Hidalgo International Bridge in Hidalgo are conducted at 1029 S. Bridge St., Hidalgo, TX 78577 and the phone number is 956-843-5700.



Visitor Information

The Harlingen Immigration Court is located at 2009 West Jefferson Avenue, Suite 300, Harlingen, Texas 78550.

The court is open to receive documents from 8:15 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The lobby doors are locked at 4:45 p.m.. The court is in session beginning at 9:00 a.m.

To contact the court, call 956-427-8580. For information regarding application deadlines or hearing dates and times, call the Immigration Court's automated system at 1-800-898-7180.

For your convenience, public restrooms are located in the main lobby.




Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need an attorney?
A: You may obtain an attorney at your own expense. A list of free legal service providers is available at the Court or click Legal Aid in the Main Menu. Whether to obtain an attorney or accredited representative or to speak/represent yourself is a personal decision which you must make.

Q. How do I notify the court of my change of address?
A: You MUST notify the court of any change of address within five days while proceedings are pending. Form EOIR-33 is the appropriate form you must file with the court to inform of any address change. The form is available from the clerk or the Immigration Judge. However, simply filing a form EOIR-33 will NOT automatically change the location of the hearing.

Q: Will there be an interpreter present if I do not speak English?
A: At your fist master calendar hearing it is likely that there will be an interpreter available to translate for you. However, depending on the language and/or dialect you speak, the Immigration Judge may adjourn your case in order to obtain an interpreter.

Q: Where can I obtain DHS forms?
A: DHS forms are available on the internet, at the local DHS office, and some forms may be available at the court.

 
Action Center Engage with EOIR Submit a Complaint Find Legal Representation Find an Immigration Court
EOIR Practice Manuals OCIJ Practice Manual BIA Practice Manual
Immigration Judge Benchbook

EOIR Forms

Virtual Law Library

Contact Us

Leadership
Juan P. Osuna
Director, Executive Office for Immigration Review
 
Contact
Office of Legislative and Public Affairs
703-305-0289
 
Case Status
 
Case Information System
240-314-1500 or 1-800-898-7180
Case status information available 24/7
 
BIA Clerk's Office
 
Filing Information
703-605-1007
 
Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer
 
Filing Information for Employer Sanctions and Anti-discrimination Cases
703-305-0864
 
Office of the General Counsel
 
Attorney Discipline Program/
Fraud Program
703-305-0470
 
Records
 
FOIA Service Center
703-605-1297
 

Q: Will my application require a fee?
A: With the exception of asylum applications, most applications for relief require a fee. Please see the standard fee schedule for details by clicking here. The regulations provide that if you are unable to afford the fee for an application -- cancellation of removal, for example -- you can request a waiver from the Immigration Judge. The procedures for requesting a fee waiver can found by clicking here.

Q: Where do I pay fees for applications?
A: The Immigration Court does not accept fees for applications. All application fees are paid to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) located at the Texas Service Center, P.O. Box 851488 – Dept A, Mesquite, TX 75185-1488. DHS Customer Service number is 1-800-375-5283.

Q: Where do I pay a bond?
A: All bonds are paid with the DHS Detention and Deportation at any DHS Detention Center or DHS District Office that accepts bond payments.

Q: When I file my documents with the court, can I leave DHS' copies with you?
A: No. Documents served on the court must also be served on the DHS trial attorneys. Their mailing addresses are below:

Harlingen:
Office of Deputy Chief Counsel
1717 Zoy Street
Harlingen, Texas 78552

Port Isabel:
Office of Deputy Chief Counsel
Port Isabel Detention Center
27991 Buena Vista Blvd.
Los Fresnos, Texas 78566

Q: How can I speak to a Judge about my case?
A: The Immigration Judges do not speak to individual respondents about their case. The respondent should consult with his/her attorney or write a letter to the Judge.

Q: Is the court open during inclement weather?
A: In extremely inclement weather, you should call the court prior to your hearing. The telephone number is 956-427-8580.



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Courtroom Etiquette
  • Please arrive early.
  • Business attire is expected of all representatives and attorneys.
  • No cell phones, beepers, or recording devises are allowed in the courtroom.
  • No food, drinks, or chewing gum are allowed in the courtroom.
  • Whether or not you have an attorney, you must go to your hearing to avoid an order being entered against you in your absence, unless otherwise notified by the Immigration Judge.
  • All documents must be filed at 2009 West Jefferson Avenue, Suite 300, Harlingen, Texas 78550. Pleadings must contain original signatures.
  • Parents with court hearings, whose young children are not in proceedings, are asked, if possible, to have a responsible adult wait with the children outside the courtroom.

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Please read our Privacy and Security Notice

Updated August 2012