One area where we have seen particular success with mandamus lawsuits is in securing delayed EAD/AP, work and travel documents. These cases are usually very successful and often result in getting an approved EAD and travel document shortly after filing suit. There are a couple of reasons for this.
First, these applications take very little time for USCIS to adjudicate. According to USCIS it takes adjudicators: (a) 0.2 hours (12 minutes) of touch time to adjudicate an application for an employment authorization filed on a Form I-765; and, (b) 0.25 hours (15 minutes) of touch time to adjudicate an extension of nonimmigrant status filed on a Form I-131. See 84 FR 62292. In other words, the combined adjudication time of subject I-765 and I-131 is less than 27 minutes. It takes a lot less time for the government to adjudicate the case than it would take to fight it.
The second reason is that the equities in these cases are frequently compelling. The processing delays are not merely causing an inconvenience. They are causing people to lose their livelihoods, fall into debt or miss a last chance to see some close relatives abroad. Employers also suffer when key employees lose their authorization to work. In other words, the facts are frequently in the plaintiffs’ favor. There is an expression among lawyers that bad facts make bad law. Assuming the case is strong, not many AUSAs want to argue against these facts.
These cases are very rewarding for us to bring as well. Filing mandamus cases for delayed EAD and AP processing, we’ve helped immigrants get started with new jobs, keep their dream jobs, visit elderly or sick relatives they haven’t seen for years and secure some certainty in their lives regarding their ability to support their families. These cases can bring tremendous value to clients and it’s wonderful to play a role in helping them through it.