The United States Department of Justice Department of Justice SealF The United States Department of Justice
Search The Site
 
Office of the Chief Immigration Judge

IMMIGRATION COURT
Los Fresnos, Texas



Welcome to the Port Isabel Processing Center!

The Port Isabel Processing Center 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 Port Isabel Immigration Court has jurisdiction over cases of detained persons only.

The sitting Immigration Judges are:
Hon. Howard Achtsam
Hon. David Ayala
Hon. Keith Hunsucker
Hon. William C. Peterson
Hon. Robert Powell
Hon. Eleazar Tovar



Visitor Information

The Port Isabel Processing Center is located on Buena Vista road, outside Los Fresnos, Texas. The detention facility is operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The Immigration Court is located within the detention center.

The mailing address for the Port Isabel court is 27991 Buena Vista Blvd, Los Fresnos, TX 78566. The court at Port Isabel is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m..

Please be advised that mail is not delivered directly to the Immigration Court. All mail is delivered to DHS. DHS personnel sort and forward mail to the Court. Please allow additional mailing time to ensure delivery prior to hearing date.

All visitors to the court must abide by security requirements imposed and enforced by the DHS. The DHS requires that all visitors have a valid picture identification and that the driver of any vehicle have proof of insurance.

To contact the Port Isabel court, call 956-547-1789. 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 next to the lobby in the courtroom.


Directions

Directions from the Harlingen Airport:
(Approximately 45 minutes driving time)

Upon exiting the airport, take a right onto Loop 499. Take a left on farm road 106. Take farm road 106, past Rio Hondo, Texas and past several small communities. Once you reach the end of FM 106, at the Laguna Atascosa Wildlife Refuge sign, take a right. The Port Isabel Processing Center will be on the left side of the road where you must check in at the booth.

Directions Heading South on Expressway 77/83:
(to Harlingen)

Take Downtown Exit to Harlingen and make a left onto Tyler Street. Tyler Street becomes FM 106. Take farm road 106, past Rio Hondo, Texas and past several small communities. Once you reach the end of FM 106, at the Laguna Atascosa Wildlife Refuge sign, take a right. The Port Isabel Processing Center will be on the left side of the road where you must check in at the booth.

 
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
 

Return to top of the page

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 and on this homepage. 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.

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 the 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:

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: Can the court make copies of documents for me?
A: No. The court does not provide copy services for the public. There is no copy service or copier available to the public at this facility.

Q: May I use your telephone?
A: No. All visitors to the court must use the public telephone located outside the front door of the court.

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 or 956-547-1788.




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 the Port Isabel Detention Center at 27991 Buena Vista Blvd. Los Fresnos, Texas 78566. 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.



Please read our Privacy and Security Notice

Updated August 2012