When US President Donald Trump took office, he promised to rescind the DACA program. Eventually, the motion reached the US Supreme Court, where justices deliberated and ultimately pushed back against the administration's efforts to rescind DACA.
For individuals involved in immigration cases and DREAMers currently living in the US, understanding this case and its future ramifications is vital to understanding how similar cases might be handled in the future.
At Smith Law Offices, LLC, we can help you work through your immigration case.
To schedule a consultation with experienced immigration lawyers who can help you defend your rights and pursue the best outcome in your case, contact us online or via phone at (636) 400-1177.
What Is DACA?
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Act allows some undocumented immigrants who were born in the US or arrived as minors to remain and work in the country.
To be eligible for DACA, an individual must be under the age of 16 at the time of entering the US and have lived on US soil since June 15, 2007. When an individual qualifies for DACA, they gain the ability to live and work legally in the US on two-year periods of deferred deportation. Every two years, they must renew their DACA status to continue living in the US.
Since it was passed in 2012, over 800,000 individuals have qualified for (and remain a part of) DACA. Over 200,00 DACA recipients are essential workers, and more than 27,000 recipients work in healthcare, occupying positions such as doctors and nurses. Currently, around 91% of DACA recipients are employed and average a wage of $17.46 per hour.
Many people confuse DACA with the DREAM (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) Act. The DREAM Act, which still has not been passed at the time of writing this blog, aims to provide a more streamlined path towards total American citizenship for undocumented immigrants who entered the US as minors. Since many of the same individuals who qualify as DACA recipients would also be eligible for the DREAM Act, people often call DACA recipients "DREAMers."
The Trump Administration's History with DACA
On September 5, 2017, Trump ordered an end to DACA. Then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions officially moved to rescind the DACA Act, prompting multiple authorities to file lawsuits against the Trump administration.
Two federal appellate courts opposed the administration, ruling that it could not rescind DACA. The case then moved to the US Supreme Court.
US Supreme Court Rules Against Trump Administration
On June 18, 2020, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 against the Trump Administration's efforts to rescind DACA. Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the Court's four liberal justices on the ruling.
The Supreme Court decided that the Trump Administration lacked sufficient justification for ending DACA. In his brief on the case, Chief Justice John Roberts called the Trump Administration's efforts to end the program "arbitrary and capricious."
Where Are We at Now?
Although the Trump Administration failed to rescind DACA successfully, that doesn't mean DACA is permanently enshrined in the law. The Court let it be known that, if the Trump Administration could devise a more legally defensible case for rescinding the program, the Court may rule in their favor in the future. As such, many immigration activists don't view the ruling as a definitive win as much as a stay of action.
At Smith Law Offices, LLC, we can help you pursue an optimal outcome in your immigration case.
Contact us online or via phone at (636) 400-1177 to learn more.