COMMUNITY EDUCATION FOR RELEASED ADULTS AND FAMILIES
The Immigration Court Helpdesk (ICH) is a program offered by Esperanza to provide free self-help services to immigrant populations facing removal proceedings. Unlike other areas of the justice system, immigration court does not provide attorneys to immigrants who cannot afford one. This means that many low-income and indigent immigrants, most of whom do not speak English and often have minimal education levels, will have to represent themselves in court. Esperanza works to empower those who must face their immigration proceedings alone by offering as much guidance as possible throughout the complicated court processes.
WHO WE SERVE
We offer legal orientations and general assistance to released adults and families in removal proceedings in the Los Angles Immigration Court Jurisdiction.
WHAT WE DO
Individual Information Sessions
ICH staff and volunteers meet with respondents on a one-on-one basis and conduct an intake interview. During the interview, we provide information about which forms of relief they may qualify for. The sessions also give respondents the opportunity to ask any questions they might have about the immigration court process. Additionally, ICH staff assists respondents with basic petitions and motions to file with the court such as; Motions to Reopen, Motions to Change Venue, and Change of Address forms.
ICH offers pro se group workshops to prepare respondents for the next steps in their immigration court proceedings. During these workshops, ICH staff explain particular types of defenses; provide tips for presenting their case in court; and assist respondents in preparing their applications. Current workshops provided include, Asylum (Part I and II) and Employment Authorization.
Group Information Sessions
ICH staff provide orientations to respondents regarding general information about immigration court processes and various forms of relief. The sessions are designed to educate respondents about their rights throughout the complex and often-frightening immigration court system.
Pro Bono Referrals
ICH collaborates with local non-profit organizations and private attorneys to provide free representation to indigent immigrants who desperately need someone to advocate for them in court. Access to a well-trained attorney could mean the difference between winning and losing a case in many instances.
Where and When
In-Court: ICH provides walk-in services* at the Los Angeles Immigration Court (606 S. Olive St., Los Angeles, CA 90014) in the 5th floor waiting room on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:30 am to 4:00 pm.
In-Office: ICH provides walk-in services* at Esperanza's offices on Fridays, 9:30 am to 4:00 pm.
*Workshops are invite only