Filed Date: April 1, 1988
Closed Date: 1991
Clearinghouse coding complete
On April 1, 1988, a group of aliens brought a class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, challenging the Immigration and Naturalization Service's (INS) administration of an amnesty program for illegal aliens authorized by Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, alleging that the "public charge" exclusion regulations were facially invalid and violated the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fifth Amendment and the Administrative Procedure Act.
The IRCA established a one-time only amnesty program through which aliens could apply for lawful temporary resident status and then, after a one-year waiting period, apply for permanent residency. 8 U.S.C. §1255a. To qualify for this program, the alien must have (1) applied for such adjustment within the 12-month period between May 5, 1987, and May 4, 1988; (2) lived continuously and unlawfully in the U.S. since January 1, 1982 and that their unlawful status was "known to the government"; (3) been continuously physically present in the United States except for ''brief, casual, and innocent absences,'' since November 6, 1986 and (4) was "admissible to the United States as an immigrant." 8 U.S.C. § 1255a (a)(1)-(4) (1988). With regard to the fourth criterion, the alien had to prove that he was not "likely at any time to become a public charge." See 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(4) (Supp. II 1990). Plaintiffs challenged the INS' regulations implementing how the "public charge" exclusion was determined. 8 C.F.R. § 245a. Those regulations included rules relating to "proof of financial responsibility," 8 C.F.R. § 245a.2(d)(4) and "public cash assistance," 8 C.F.R. § 245a.1(i)(1988).
This case was one of several major lawsuits filed throughout the country, challenging different policies and practices used by the INS to implement the IRCA amnesty program, 8 U.S.C. § 1255a. See Zambrano v. INS, S-88-455 EJG (E.D.Cal.) [IM-CA-8] (dealt with public charge exclusion); Ayuda v. Meese, 88-CV-00625 (D.D.C) [See IM-DC-3 of this collection]; Catholic Social Services v. Reno, 2:86-cv-01343-LKK-JFM (E.D.Cal.) [IM-CA-11]; and LULAC v. INS, 2:87-cv-04757-WDK-CW (C.D.Cal.) [IM-CA-19].
Plaintiffs sought a TRO and preliminary injunction, which were both denied by the District Court (Judge Kenneth Conboy). The Second Circuit affirmed. Perales v. Meese, 847 F.2d 55 (2d Cir.1988).
On March 29, 1989, the District Court denied the parties' cross-motions for partial summary judgment. The parties then entered into a Stipulation and Order, filed July 21, 1989, in which the INS agreed to publish amended regulations relating to the definition of public cash assistance and further agreed to reexamine all timely filed applications that had been denied on public charge grounds.
Following a six-day bench trial, the District Court issued an opinion in which it found in favor of the government on all of plaintiffs' claims, holding that the INS public charge regulations were neither facially invalid nor unlawful as applied. The Court also rejected the plaintiffs' Fifth Amendment Due Process claim (that the INS disseminated misinformation concerning the public charge regulations). Perales v. Thornburgh, 762 F.Supp. 1036, 1061 (S.D.N.Y.1991). The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (Circuit Judge Walker) reversed. Perales v. Thornburgh, 967 F.2d 798 (2nd Cir. 1992). The Supreme Court granted certiorari, vacated the Second Circuit judgment, and remanded the case for further consideration in light of in light of Reno v. Catholic Social Services, Inc., 509 U.S. 43, 113 S.Ct. 2485, 125 L.Ed.2d 38 (1993). Reno v. Perales, 509 U.S. 917, 113 S.Ct. 3027, 125 L.Ed.2d 716 (1993).
On remand, the Second Circuit affirmed the portion of the District Court's judgment that held that the INS satisfied its duty to disseminate accurate information regarding the amnesty program and remanded for further proceedings as to plaintiffs' facial challenge to the public charge regulations. Perales v. Thornburgh, 4 F.3d 99 (2nd Cir. 1992), cert. denied 516 U.S. 1043, 116 S.Ct. 699, 133 L.Ed.2d 657 (1996).
As the PACER docket does not contain any entries and as there were no other published opinions, we do not know what transpired after the case was remanded to the District Court in 1996.
Dan Dalton (1/4/2008)
Abrams, Robert W. (New York)
Calvo, Janet M. (New York)
Alhadeff, Marla (New York)
Andrade, Vibiana (California)
Bosniak, Linda (New York)
Cardamone, Richard J. (New York)
Conboy, Kenneth (New York)
Lumbard, Joseph Edward (New York)
McLaughlin, Joseph Michael (New York)
Meskill, Thomas Joseph (Connecticut)
Walker, John Mercer Jr. (New York)
Winter, Steven L. (New York)
Last updated July 11, 2023, 10:16 p.m.Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.
State / Territory: New York
Filing Date: April 1, 1988
Closing Date: 1991
Case Ongoing: No
Aliens whose applications for adjustment under the amnesty program of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, were denied because of the “public charge” exclusion.
Public Interest Lawyer: Yes
Filed Pro Se: No
Class Action Sought: Yes
Class Action Outcome: Unknown
Causes of Action:
Prevailing Party: Unknown
Nature of Relief:
Source of Relief:
Content of Injunction: