Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick shares very exciting news for Dreamers. On June 18, 2020, the United States Supreme Court handed down a ruling blocking the Trump administration from rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an Obama-era program that grants young undocumented immigrants temporary employment authorization and shields them from deportation.
Keep on watching for more information.
For nearly 8 years, the DACA program has helped thousands of undocumented young adults live and work in the United States without fear of deportation. Aside from having formal legal status in the United States, Dreamers are by all accounts American. Many have lived in the United States for most of their lives, attended American schools, established deep ties to the United States, and adopted the American way of life.
Unfortunately, since the beginning of his campaign, President Trump has targeted the DACA program promising to dismantle “the illegal” DACA program once and for all. President Trump long criticized the DACA program because it was created unilaterally by former President Barack Obama by executive order. President Trump has called the program illegal because it was not created by Congress.
As you may recall, on September 5, 2017, the President announced his controversial decision to rescind the DACA program which was met with great resistance by American universities, several states, and other pro-immigrant groups. Soon after, several states filed lawsuits against the Department of Homeland Security to stop the government from rescinding DACA. In all lawsuits, the lower court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, ordering the government to keep DACA in place. The lawsuits were merged and finally came to the Supreme Court in November of 2019.
Today, the Supreme Court handed down a final ruling in favor of plaintiffs finding that although the Trump administration has the power to end DACA, it did not follow the procedural formalities required under the Administrative Procedure Act when it sought to rescind the DACA program. The Supreme Court majority agreed with the plaintiffs that the Trump administration did not provide a good reason for its decision to end DACA and violated the APA.
The Court’s decision only dealt with the issue of whether the government went about rescinding DACA in the “right” way and did not address the legality or illegality of DACA. The majority decision also stopped short of ordering the government to accept new applications for DACA.
The Trump administration has expressed that they will continue with their plans to rescind the DACA program this time going about the rescission the “right way,” so that it complies with the APA. This will of course take time and time is not on the President’s side given the near end of his Presidency. If President Trump is re-elected it is certain he will continue to pursue the rescission of DACA leaving the fate of Dreamers to Congress.
As time goes on, we expect the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to issue a statement regarding whether the agency will accept new applications for DACA or advance parole. We do not think this will be the case given that the order does not require the agency to do this. Thus far, the agency has only issued a short statement expressing their dissatisfaction with the ruling.
For more information about the Supreme Court’s ruling please click here.
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