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1) If you sue the Government, they will retaliate by declining your case- This is a persistent one and completely understandable. It’s just not true. We’ve never seen this happen in our experience and have heard the same from all of our colleagues that file these cases regularly. Some colleagues, who are former government attorneys themselves, even report that people that sue actually get better treatment by the Government.
2) Mandamus cases are very expensive- Expensive is a relative concept. However, as far as federal litigation goes, these are very inexpensive to bring. The vast majority of mandamus cases are brought and completed for less than $10k. In some instances, much less.
3) Judges favor the Government so these cases are typically not successful- The majority of viable cases that are brought resolve favorably for the immigrant plaintiffs.
4) These cases always work- Unfortunately, this is not true either. There are no guarantees when it comes to litigation. Sometimes the Government wins.
5) The same attorney that handled my application is the best person to handle my mandamus case- That might be true, but frequently it is not. Federal litigation is distinct skill set that takes years to hone. It is very different than practicing in immigration court or filing and advising on applications. Don’t assume because an attorney is skilled in one that they are skilled in the other. Similar to picking a doctor, clients are typically best served by working with specialists.