Kerry v. Din

Summarized by:

  • Court: United States Supreme Court
  • Area(s) of Law: Constitutional Law
  • Date Filed: June 15, 2015
  • Case #: 13-1402
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: SCALIA, J., announced the judgment of the Court and delivered an opinion, in which ROBERTS, C. J., and THOMAS, J., joined. KENNEDY, J., filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, in which ALITO, J., joined. BREYER, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which GINSBURG, SOTOMAYOR, and KAGAN, JJ., joined.
  • Full Text Opinion

A liberty interest in marriage is not violated by not granting a visa to a foreign living spouse.

Respondent, a naturalized citizen of the United States, brought suit against the Federal Government for violation of her constitutional rights after her husband was denied a visa. Respondent claimed that her due process rights under the Fifth Amendment were violated because the Government interfered with her “liberty interest in her marriage.” Respondent’s husband was found ineligible for entry into the United States because he was once a member of the Taliban and under 8 U.S.C. §1182(a)(3)(B) “terrorist activities” are a bar for admission. Respondent sought judicial review of the denial under the Due Process Clause.

The Ninth Circuit agreed that Respondent had a protected liberty interest in her marriage and found that Respondent was entitled to judicial review of her husband’s visa decision.

The Court reversed the Ninth Circuit’s decision. Justice Scalia wrote the opinion, which Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Thomas joined, and found that Respondent was not deprived of “life, liberty or property” when her husband was not granted a visa. The Court did not recognize a substantive due process right to live with one’s spouse. Therefore, the Government did not violate Respondent’s constitutional rights by refusing to grant her husband a visa and Respondent is not afforded procedural due process to review the decision.

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