Jennings Immigration Law Office

Appeals Court Denies Challenge to Initial DACA

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has turned away a legal challenge to the initial 2012 DACA program. This lawsuit is entirely separate from the Texas lawsuit against the November 2014 expanded DACA and DAPA executive actions. However, it may have significant bearing upon the Texas case because it addresses some of the same questions and was decided in the same jurisdiction. In the decision reached this week, the appeals court determined that the state of Mississippi and a group of ICE agents had no standing to bring the lawsuit against the DACA program due to lack of evidence of harm resulting from the program. This is important to the Texas lawsuit because it is also brought by a group of states claiming they will be harmed by the executive actions. The appeals court also found that the DACA program was a valid exercise of prosecutorial discretion by the Department of Homeland Security. This week’s ruling, however, does not guarantee any particular decision on the Texas lawsuit. It merely means that the group of states bringing the Texas lawsuit must be able to better prove the alleged harm they would suffer in order to succeed. An initial hearing has been scheduled for April 17 before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on the Texas lawsuit.