Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Election 2020: Live Results | Tracking COVID-19 | Racial Justice

Judge: Asylum Determinations Should Proceed In Family Separations Case

People seeking political asylum in the United States line up to be interviewe...

Credit: Associated Press

Above: People seeking political asylum in the United States line up to be interviewed in Tijuana, Mexico, just across the U.S. border south of San Diego, Monday, June 4, 2018.

A federal judge in San Diego Thursday ordered the Trump administration to immediately move forward with asylum determinations for migrant families separated at the border, despite objections from the government that a proposed settlement agreement hasn't been finalized.

Under the proposed settlement agreement — which U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw gave unofficial preliminary approval to last month — reunited migrant families would get a second chance at applying for asylum.

RELATED: Honduran Migrant Caravan Heads To US Amid Trump Threats

Attorneys for the migrant families had argued that when the families were separated at the border, most children were not interviewed to determine if they had a credible fear of returning to their native country. Their parents were granted interviews, but were so distraught after being separated that they didn't clearly advocate for themselves, attorneys said.

Under the settlement, reunited migrant families still in the U.S. will be allowed to remain until all family members have completed the asylum process.

RELATED: Trump Administration Appeals Ruling That Immigrants Can Stay

When Sabraw unofficially approved the settlement, both sides agreed that the asylum determination process should get underway as soon as possible.

Sabraw granted preliminary approval of the settlement last week, paving the way for credible fear interviews to proceed within days of a migrant confirming his or her wishes to go forward with an asylum claim.

Another status conference on the class-action lawsuit is scheduled Nov. 9.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Matters podcast branding

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.