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U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Decision Blocking President Obama’s Immigration Executive Action

On June 23, 2016, an equally divided U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal’s injunction on President Obama’s DAPA1 and expanded DACA2 immigration programs. The decision only concerned the temporary injunction that prevented the two programs from being implemented while the underlying lawsuit is being resolved. The Supreme Court did not issue written reasons, and the decision came after a 4-4 vote as the Justices were unable to reach a majority opinion.

Unless the U.S. Government or intervening parties request a rehearing from the Supreme Court, the case will go back to the District Court for the underlying issues to be litigated on the merits. However, in light of the Supreme Court’s decision, the two immigration programs will not be implemented while the remaining lawsuit is pending.

Note that this decision does not negatively impact the validity of the original DACA program that has been in effect since 2012. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) continues to accept initial and renewal applications under the 2012 DACA program.

If you have any questions regarding DAPA or DACA, please do not hesitate to contact us at (608) 252-9291 or rvo@dewittllp.com, or simply contact your existing DeWitt attorney.

1 Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) was the subject of a November 2014 executive order. If implemented, DAPA would defer deportation and provide employment authorization for a period of three years to certain eligible individuals who are in the U.S. undocumented, but who had no criminal history that would render them a threat to public safety or national security, and who have a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident child. DAPA only offers temporary relief; it does not provide legal immigration status, permanent residence or U.S. citizenship to eligible individuals.

2 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was the subject of a June 2012 executive order that deferred deportation and provided employment authorization for a period of two years (with the possibility of renewal), to certain eligible individuals who were brought to the U.S. as children, and who lacked lawful immigration status. That program was implemented in August 2012 and continues to be in effect today. In November 2014, President Obama issued an executive order seeking to expand the original DACA program. If implemented, the 2014 DACA expansion would defer deportation and provide employment authorization for a period of three years (instead of two), and would increase the class of eligible individuals; DACA (both the original and the proposed expanded version) only offers temporary relief; it does not provide legal immigration status, permanent residence or U.S. citizenship to eligible individuals.

About the Author

Raluca Vais-Ottosen has assisted numerous clients with Immigration matters ranging from family-based and individual Immigration applications, to employment related visas and I-9 employment eligibility verification issues. In addition to her Immigration practice, she also has an extensive background in Employment Law. She assists companies in a number of areas, including but not limited to claims of workplace discrimination, harassment and retaliation, termination and constructive discharge, workplace investigations by State and Federal agencies, as well as Employment Litigation.

Contact Luca by email or by phone at (608) 252-9291.

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