Supreme Court Decision on DACA (June 2020)


June 2020 DACA Decision

Have you heard the wonderful news released this June by the Supreme Court regarding DACA? The government’s move to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals was not approved by the Supreme Court. On June 18, 2020, the Supreme Court published that the arguments presented by the Department of Homeland Security to rescind the program were refused by the lower court, the 9th Circuit, and the Supreme Court.

Andres Mejer, immigrant-turned-immigration-attorney explains this Supreme Court decision and what it means for eligible DACA filers and potential DACA applicants.

DACA is not a direct path to citizenship

The DACA Memorandum went into effect in 2012 after decades of Congress being unable to pass the DREAM Act, which stands for Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors. This DREAM Act was a bipartisan law that would supposedly allow people who came to the US as children to gain legal status.

Unlike the DREAM Act, DACA does not give legal status to the people who have it. You can neither get a green card nor become a U.S. citizen if you are a DACA recipient, without some other application. What DACA does is to prevent deportation and provide you with work authorization (and access to certain federal benefits). 

Just like DACA, another executive order called DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans) provides a deferred status to parents of U.S. Citizens or lawful permanent residents. This means that deportation is deferred for parents meeting certain criteria and they can be authorized to work. It was announced by President Obama in November 2014 but faced lawsuits from several states in February 2015 leading to it being stopped.

DACA termination faced court battles

In June 2017 the Trump administration announced they were rescinding the DAPA order. At the same time, the Acting Director of Homeland Security (DHS), Elaine C. Duke decided to terminate DACA based on advice from then-Attorney General, Jeff Sessions. Duke announced that the DHS would not accept any new DACA applicants. However, those currently with DACA could apply for a 2-year renewal. 

Several groups sued DHS regarding the move to end DACA, stating that it violated the APA (Administrative Procedures Act) because rescission was arbitrary, capricious, and infringed on the Equal Protection Clause of the 5th Amendment. 

In response, DHS argued they weren’t bound by the APA and that under the INA (Immigration and Nationality Act) courts had no jurisdiction to tell them what to do about DACA. 

Courts: DACA Elimination is wrong

All courts agreed to go against the DHS petition although they had different reasons for what DHS did wrong. But in effect, the decision led to an injunction that stopped President Trump from completely eliminating DACA. 

The battle did not end there. The DC District Court gave DHS another chance to issue a new memorandum as to why DACA should be rescinded. However, the new DHS Secretary Nielsen did not offer any new arguments and even included new justifications for the previous decision regarding rescission. 

Given DHS’ latest response, the D.C. District Court refused to allow DACA to be ended as no new legal arguments had been provided by DHS.  This is the second time the move to eliminate DACA was not approved. 

The Trump Administration then appealed this decision to the Second, Ninth, and DC Courts, as well as asking the Supreme Court to grant certiorari (hear the case). When the 9th Circuit affirmed the lower court decision, the Supreme Court granted certiorari. 

The basis for the Supreme Court decision

Before issuing its decision, the SC looked into whether the APA claims are reviewable, and if so, whether the rescission was arbitrary and capricious in violation of the APA, and that the plaintiffs have stated an equal protection claim. 

According to the SC, the DACA rescission decision is reviewable under the APA, contrary to the claim earlier made by DHS. This is because DACA recipients have access to medicare and social security which belong to interests that the “courts are often called upon to protect.” Thus, the DHS’ decision to end DACA was declared arbitrary and capricious under the APA. 

Moreover, the two jurisdictional provisions under the INA do not apply, contrary to the Government’s argument that the court had no jurisdiction to decide on DACA. 

DHS can end DACA

Legally speaking, DHS has the power to end DACA. Four of the majority Justices agreed that the rescission of DACA did not violate the Equal Protection Clause of the 5th Amendment of the constitution. If only the DHS secretary had focused on ending benefits but allowing for deferred action, the Court would have allowed DACA to end. But since the DHS kept focusing on ending both, they went beyond what was allowed without “reasoned analysis.” This means that although the courts agree that DHS can rescind DACA, the main dispute during the recent court battles centered on the procedure DHS followed to attain rescission. 

The DHS also failed to address whether there was a “legitimate reliance” on the DACA Memorandum in Secretary Duke’s decision.  In other words, DREAMers relied on the government’s promise and now they shouldn’t be punished for it.  

DACA eligible applicants should apply now

Although at the moment, DACA continues, the SC memorandum has two main implications moving forward. First, should DHS follow the steps set out by the Supreme Court, they can successfully end DACA. Second, the issue is back at the lower courts, so there might be a delay in action while the government re-works its strategy to end DACA. 

If you are eligible, this means that your window for application is closing. If you passed the criteria for DACA, you should apply as soon as possible. Those who believe they fall under DACA but have not checked their eligibility can get in touch with one of our immigration attorneys to give you a case evaluation. 

You should consider applying for DACA even if it does not grant legal status since it keeps you from being in the U.S. unlawfully. Unlawful presence can actually hinder your chances of getting a green card.

In addition, DACA allows you to apply for Advance Parole. Advance Parole means that you get permission before you leave the U.S. to certify that you can re-enter. If you leave and come back, your re-entry is considered a legal entry. So, if you have a spouse who is a US Citizen or a child over 21 who is, you could adjust your status in the U.S. instead of having to leave while your green card application is processing.

Get Help from an Immigration Attorney

If you intend to apply for DACA, there are seven general requirements you must fulfill:

  • You had to have entered the US before you were 16 years old
  • You must be under 31 years old or younger on June 15, 2012
  • You must have lived in the US continuously from June 15, 2007 until now
  • You must have been physically inside the US on June 15, 2012
  • You couldn’t have legal status on June 15, 2012
  • You must be in school, have graduated from HS, be enrolled in college, have your GED or be getting your GED, and
  • You can’t have committed any serious crimes or 3 or more misdemeanors.

If you meet these qualifications, we highly recommend that you contact Andres Mejer Law immigration lawyers to get help. Stop deportation and explore your other options in getting legal status in the future. Don’t wait for the administration to end DACA before making your move. Contact our law firm today for your case consultation.

Share This Post!

Related Posts

Call Us Today!


New Jersey Immigration Attorney

Need help?

Got questions?

New Jersey Immigration Attorney

We're here 24/7.
Call Now!



Eatontown, NJ


Address

286 RT 35
Unit D
Eatontown, NJ 07724

Map/Directions

Lakewood, NJ


Address

212 2nd Street
Suite 104
Lakewood, NJ 08701

Map/Directions

Newark, NJ


Address

50 Park Place
Suite #1101
Newark, NJ 07102

Map/Directions

Edison, NJ


Address

1929 NJ-27
Edison, NJ 08817

Map/Directions

Bridgewater, NJ


Address

1065 US-22 Suite 2B
Bridgewater Township, NJ 08807

Map/Directions

Copyright 2021 Provencher and Flatt, LLP - All Rights Reserved. Powered by Advantage Attorney Marketing & Cloud Solutions

Immigration Attorney

Request Your Free Copy

Solicite su copia gratuita

Immigration Book

Request Your Free Copy

Solicite su copia gratuita

Arrested in New Jersey

Request Your Free Copy

Solicite su copia gratuita

Immigration Attorney

Ask an Immigration Attorney

Ask a question or tell us about your situation, we are happy to help!

Find out if you already qualify for legal US status online now!

Find Out Immediately If You Qualify for Legal Status

Subheading

Step 1 of 7

Your privacy is important to us. We will keep the information you provide strictly confidential. We only use your information to determine if you may be eligible for immigration benefits in the United States. The information we provide should not be construed as legal advice and submission of this form does not create an attorney/client relationship.

Sin cargo. Sin obligación.  -  No charge. No obligation.

Please accept the following terms and conditions to use our free immigration solution finder.

Ingrese la siguiente información para aceptar los términos y condiciones.

Enter the following information to accept the terms and conditions.

Averigüe de inmediato si califica para el estatus legal

Información Personal / Personal Information

Subheading

Idioma Preferido*

Preferred Language

Step 2 of 7

Fecha Nacimiento*

Date of Birth

Pais de Nacimiento*

Country of Birth

Entradas a las EEUU / Entries into the US

Subheading

Step 3 of 7

Fecha Entrada*

Date of Entry

Entrada Legal*

Did you enter legally?

Background

Subheading

Step 4 of 7

¿Tiene usted padres, conyuge o hijos mayores de 21 anos,Que ha estado o esta en las fuerzas armadas Americanas?*

Do you have a parent, spouse, or child over 21 who is or was in the US military?

¿Tiene usted padres,conyuge o hijos mayores de 21 anos, ciudadanos Americanos o residentes permanentes?*

Do you have a parent, spouse, or child over 21 who is a US citizen or lawful permanent resident?

¿Ha tenido usted, sus padres o sus abuelos un estado legal en los EEUU?*

Did you, your parents, or your grandparents ever have legal status in the U.S.?

¿Esta considerando matrimonio con us ciudadano Americano o residente permanente? ( mismo sexo incluido)*

Are you considering marriage to a US citizen or green card holder (same-sex marriage included)?

Background

Subheading

Step 5 of 7

¿Alguien ha peticionado a su favor por motivos de inmigración?*

Has anyone ever filed an immigration petition for you before?

¿Ha sido usted deportado o esta usted en procedimiento de deportación ahora?*

Have you ever been deported or are you in deportation proceedings now?

Ha sido abusado por sus padres, conyuge o hijo mayor de edad?*

Has your parent, spouse, or adult child been abusive to you?

¿Si es asi, fue previo a Abril 30 del 2001?*

If so, was it before April 30, 2001?

Background

Subheading

Step 6 of 7

¿Fue usted, conyuge, sus padres, pareja o sus hijos victimas de de un crimen violento en los EEUU?*

Were you, your parents, siblings, spouse, partner, or children a victim of a violent crime in the US?

¿Es usted menor de 21 años y soltero?*

Are you under 21 and not married?

¿Tiene usted un padre, conyuge o hijo menor de 15 anos con requerimientos especiales médicos (dificultades de estudio, alergias severas, asma u otra condición medica severa)?*

Do you have a parent, spouse, or child under 15 with medical or special needs (learning disability, severe allergies or asthma, or other serious medical condition)?

¿Fue usted maltratado, abusado o abandonado por sus padres?*

Did your parents mistreat, abuse, or abandon you?

Background

Subheading

Step 7 of 7

¿Tenia usted 30 anos o menos en Junio, 15, 2012?*

Were you 30 years or under on June 15, 2012?

¿Tenía usted 15 años o menos en su primera entrada en los EEUU?*

Were you 15 years old or younger on your first entry into the US?

Click below now to see if you qualify!

¡Haga clic abajo ahora para ver si califica!

New Jersey Immigration Attorney

Get instant access now!

Enter your name and email address below