Thiam v. Holder, No. 10-3371 (6th Cir. Apr. 30, 2012) (published)
The court delved into the thorny matter of remote IJ's and venue. In this case, the IJ was in Virginia but the case was docketed in Cleveland. For the ICH, the alien and her attorney travelled to Virginia because they felt that her credibility would be more apparent in person. On appeal, the BIA treated the case as if it arose in the 4th Circuit and applied that circuit's law on firm resettlement.
On review, the court found that 242(b)(2) is nonjurisdictional and does not mandate the transfer of a petition for review to a different circuit. A case will be transferred if it is in the interests of justice, which it was not in Thiam. Without deciding whether venue was proper in the 6th Circuit, the court remanded because the BIA did not apply its most recent decision on firm resettlement, Matter of A-G-G-. It would not have been an efficient use of resources to transfer venue and re-brief the case.