Special Immigrant Juvenile Adjudications: An Opportunity for Adoption of Best Practices

This report by the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman, published in April 2011, issues recommendations regarding adjudications for those who seek Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. Specifically, the Ombudsman recommends that USCIS: (1) Standardize its practices of: (a) Providing specialized training for those officers adjudicating SIJ status; (b) Establishing dedicated SIJ units or Points of Contact (POCs) at local offices; and (c) Ensuring adjudications are completed within the statutory timeframe; (2) Cease requesting the evidence underlying juvenile court determinations of foreign child dependency; and (3) Issue guidance, including agency regulations, regarding adequate evidence for SIJ filings, including general criteria for what triggers an interview for the SIJ petition, and make this information available on the USCIS website.