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National Resources

ICE Out of Courts Campaign Toolkit

IDP’s campaign work responding to ICE courthouse raids and arrests has focused on a statewide campaign in New York, and on working with partners in other states as part of what has become a national movement. This toolkit presents materials generated by IDP, the ICE Out of Courts Coalition (#ICEOutofCourts), and national partners in waging our campaigns against ICE courthouse raids. It includes legal theories, legislation, judicial rules, and campaign materials as examples on how to build meaningful policy interventions at the state and local level. We also include statements and policies by ICE, state and federal officials, and the New York Office of Court Administration (OCA) developed in response to advocacy on this issue. We hope this information can be a useful guide to campaigns blossoming across the country to end ICE courthouse arrests.

Click here to download the full toolkit, or see the Table of Contents below to download by section:


Respondents can move to terminate proceedings on various grounds, including if ICE has engaged in conduct that is conscience-shocking or violates fundamental rights. ICE’s widespread practice of courthouse arrests meets this standard. IDP encourages noncitizens arrested by ICE in or around a courthouse to move to terminate their removal proceedings on this basis. In collaboration with NYU School of Law Immigrant Rights Clinic students Sarah Taitz and Jane Wang-Williams and Professor Nancy Morawetz, we have prepared and filed an amicus brief in multiple cases before the immigration courts in New York, arguing for the appropriate remedy of termination of removal proceedings in courthouse arrest cases. The brief can serve various functions: it can serve as a model for an individual noncitizen’s motion to terminate, can be attached as an exhibit in support of a motion to terminate, and in certain cases IDP is available to formally file the brief in support of an individual litigant. 

The brief argues that courthouse arrests:

  1. Violate the centuries-old common law tradition which rejects civil arrests in courthouses so as to protect the effective administration of justice in the courts.
  2. Violate the constitutional right to access the courts.
  3. Violate the Tenth Amendment because ICE is a federal agency interfering with the functioning of state courts and taking advantage of state resources.

Please contact IDP for additional information about our amicus brief.

On January 10, 2018, ICE issued Directive 11072.1, its first formal, publicly available policy memo on immigration enforcement actions inside courthouses, and subsequently updated its FAQ on Sensitive Locations and Courthouse Arrests. IDP and the NYU School of Law Immigrant Rights Clinic have published an annotated version of this document to provide legal and factual context.

IDP Resource: The New York Protect Our Courts Act: Model Legislation to Regulate ICE Arrests at State Courts

In early June 2018, the New York State legislature introduced the Protect Our Courts Act (A.11013/S.08925), drawing from IDP’s legal research and analysis, developing one of the most protective pieces of state or local legislation in the country to respond to and impose legal restrictions on federal civil immigration arrests of individuals who are attending court. We have developed The New York Protect Our Courts Act: Model Legislation to Regulate ICE at State Courts to encourage legislators and advocates in other jurisdictions to take similar action, using New York’s bill for guidance.

National Media Coverage:

Petition for Writ of Protection Filed in Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts

Application for a Proposed Rule of Court Prohibiting Civil Arrests at California Courthouses

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