Prosecutorial Discretion

Prosecutorial Discretion is the authority of an agency or officer to decide what charges to bring and how to pursue each case. Prosecutorial discretion may be exercised at any stage of an immigration case.

Specifically, prosecutorial discretion may be exercised when deciding whether to: issue a detainer; initiate removal proceedings; focus enforcement resources on particular violations or conduct; stop, question, or arrest a particular person; detain or release someone on bond, supervision, or personal recognizance; settle or dismiss a removal case; stay a final order of removal; pursue an appeal; and/or execute a removal order.

An example of a favorable exercise of prosecutorial discretion is when an immigration lawyer works with a government attorney by preparing compelling evidence to terminate or administratively close removal proceedings.