Gonzales v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Immigration
  • Date Filed: 10-25-2011
  • Case #: No. 09-35174
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Callahan for the Court; Circuit Judge Canby and Silverman
  • Full Text Opinion

The Ninth Circuit's opinion Duran Gonzales II , finds that the Plaintiffs are ineligible for adjustment of status as the case is applied retroactively to those who applied for adjustment prior to the opinion.

Duran Gonzalez and others voluntarily filed applications for adjustment, disclosing that they were aliens who had been previously removed or deported and reentered the United States without inspection. In doing so they relied on the Courts opinion in the Perez-Gonzalez holding which stated that they were still eligible for relief despite illegal reentry into the country. The district court agreed and granted a preliminary injunction. The government appealed. On appeal the Ninth Circuit held that the Supreme Court’s opinion in Brand X requires the Court to defer to the Board of Immigration Appeals reasonable interpretation of the statute that the Plaintiffs were ineligible for relief. Even though the opinion was conflicting with Court's previous decision in Perez-Gonzalez, the Ninth Circuit vacated the district court’s injunction. Plaintiffs filed a petition for rehearing arguing that the opinion should not be applied retroactively to petitioners who applied for adjustment of status prior to the opinion. The Ninth Circuit held that opinion had retroactive application because the Court applied its holding to the parties, the opinion did not reserve the question of retroactivity or mention prospective-only application, and the opinion was routinely applied by the districts court and the Board of Immigration Appeals. AFFIRMED.

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