On February 3, 2016, acting Chief Immigration Judge Print Maggard issued a memorandum revising docketing practices for certain EOIR priority cases. Those special categories include unaccompanied children, adults with children who have been released on alternatives to detention, and adults with children who are detained. Cases that fall into these categories are higher priorities than other cases.
Particularly interesting is the failure to include asylum applicants who are in removal proceedings. The law requires these individuals to file their asylum applications within one year of their arrival in the U.S. There are a number of cases that are scheduled for well after the one year period, suggesting that these vulnerable applicants could be left without the ability to qualify for asylum due to circumstances beyond their control; these circumstances being the way the immigration court handles the docketing, or scheduling, procedures.