Supreme Court Agrees to Hear DAPA Case

February 15, 2016

By Immigration Group

This article was prepared with the assistance of ABIL, the Alliance of Business Immigration Lawyers, of which Laura Danielson is an active member.

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to rule on a challenge to President Obama’s “Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA)” program, in U.S. v. Texas, No. 15-674. Most recently, in November 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld an injunction based on insufficient notice and opportunity for public comment, preventing the program from proceeding until the legal matter could be addressed. The appeals court also said that President Obama had exceeded his statutory authority.

In an unusual move, the Court has asked the parties to the case whether President Obama violated his constitutional obligations to enforce U.S. laws—a question that goes to the heart of the scope of presidential power. Also at issue is whether the complaining states have standing to sue the federal government. The states argue that they would suffer direct and concrete injury in millions of additional dollars expended if DAPA goes forward; for example, Texas would have to provide driver’s licenses to program beneficiaries.

According to reports, the case is expected to be argued in April and decided in June.

A brief submitted on behalf of the Obama administration is here. The states’ brief is here. The Fifth Circuit’s opinion is here. The opinion granting a preliminary injunction, by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Brownsville Division, is here