Immigration Justice Campaign is an initiative of American Immigration Council, American Immigration Lawyers Association, and American Immigration Representation Project.

Immigration Justice Campaign Text Logo
Immigration Justice Campaign Text Logo

Master Calendar

The first several immigration court appearances in an asylum case are generally one or more “master calendar” hearings. These materials on this page will walk you through what Master Calendars are, how they work, and how to prepare for them.

Required Step

EOIR E-registry

In order to enter an appearance on behalf of your client in immigration court, you must first register to practice before the immigration court by completing EOIR’s E-registry process. It is a two-step process involving online registration followed by in-person verification of your identity at your local immigration court.

Required Form

Fillable EOIR-28

You must file this form at or before your client’s first Master Calendar hearing in order to be entered as the attorney of record on your client’s case.

30 Min.

Preparing for Master Calendar Hearings

ABA Commission on Immigration
This webinar presented by the ABA Commission on Immigration provides an in-depth overview of the Master Calendar Hearing and filing applications for relief including reviewing the Notice to Appear, obtaining client case files, preparing for the hearing, what to expect at the hearing, and forms of relief


Annotated Notice to Appear

Immigration Justice Campaign
The Notice to Appear (NTA) is the charging document in immigration court proceedings. Pleading to the factual allegations and legal charges in the NTA happens at a Master Calendar hearing, before an individual hearing is scheduled. This annotated NTA explains the significance of the most important elements of the NTA.


Mock Master Calendar hearing

Prof. Michele Pistone, Villanova University
A mock master calendar hearing in an asylum case.


Immigration Equality’s Immigration Court Proceedings Manual section on Master Calendar Hearings

This manual provides a clear step-by-step description of what to expect at the Master Calendar Hearing. Although this manual is written in the asylum context, the information provided is relevant to many types of cases in immigration court.


Immigration Court Practice Manual: Master Calendar Hearing

The Master Calendar Hearing section of the Immigration Court Manual outlines EOIR’s official rules and guidance related to the proceeding.