Federal Judges Rule in Favor of Immigrant Interests Twice

In two separate cases last week, federal judges ruled in the interests of immigrant communities, each one a significant victory for immigrants and immigrant advocates. In today’s blog, we present the results of both cases!

If you need counsel for your own immigration case, speak with the New Jersey immigration lawyers at The Law Offices of Lloyd E. Bennett Esq., P.C.. Se Habla Español.

SDNY U.S. District Court Prevents Use of Public Charge Rule During Pandemic

Last week, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) ruled against the federal government from “enforcing, applying, implementing, or treating as effective” the USCIS’ new public charge rule, which was announced last year. The decision will apply for as long as there is a national health emergency. The public charge rule essentially made immigrant petitions inadmissible if they are likely to use public benefits, i.e. become a “public charge.”

In response, the USCIS announced that it would no longer use the 2019 public charge rule, instead using its previous guidance on public charges written in 1999. Any applications or petitions filed after July 29, 2020 will not be evaluated under the 2019 public charge rule. 

Judge Upholds Decision Preventing ICE from Collaborating with Local Police

U.S. Chief District Judge Freda Wolfson dismissed a lawsuit last week that would have challenged a state rule that bars local police from aiding in ICE investigations. Titled “The Immigrant Trust Directive,” Governor Grewal wrote the state rule to draw a clear line between local police work and federal immigration enforcement.

Elected officials and local police have been fighting the rule for years. This lawsuit was the latest attempt at undoing the state rule, but the federal court upheld the rule, saying that it does not interfere with the federal government’s ability to enforce its own laws. 

If you’re wondering how your immigration case might be affected by these recent decisions, speak with our New Jersey immigration law firm as soon as possible.