Case: Tartakovsky v. Pierre

3:07-cv-01667 | U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California

Filed Date: Aug. 22, 2007

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On August 22, 2007, lawful permanent residents whose naturalization adjudications had been delayed more than 120 days filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of California against the DHS, FBI, DOJ, and USCIS. Plaintiffs alleged that the delay in adjudicating their naturalization applications violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 USC 1447(b)), which requires applications to be adjudicated within 120 days. Plaintiffs also claimed that defendants had violated the Administrative Procedu…

On August 22, 2007, lawful permanent residents whose naturalization adjudications had been delayed more than 120 days filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of California against the DHS, FBI, DOJ, and USCIS. Plaintiffs alleged that the delay in adjudicating their naturalization applications violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 USC 1447(b)), which requires applications to be adjudicated within 120 days. Plaintiffs also claimed that defendants had violated the Administrative Procedures Act for unreasonable and extraordinary delay in adjudication and for failure to follow notice-and-comment requirements. Finally, they brought a claim for violation of due process.

The plaintiffs sought class certification on behalf of "[a]ll persons residing within the Southern District of California who have submitted or will submit applications for naturalization to CIS, and who have met all statutory requirements for naturalization, and whose applications for naturalization are not adjudicated within 120 days of the date of their naturalization examinations." They sought declaratory and injunctive relief. They also asked to be naturalized by the district court.

The ACLU brought the lawsuit as part of a nationwide effort to challenge systemic delays in naturalization caused by the USCIS decision to expand dramatically the databases used for the FBI name check. Using this over-inclusive database caused prolonged delays for lawful permanent residents who applied for citizenship.

On March 11, 2008, the District Court (Judge Roger T. Benitez) dismissed plaintiffs' claims with respect to the unreasonable delays, the notice-and-comment procedures, and due process. The court remanded the named plaintiffs' naturalization applications to the agency "with instructions that USCIS adjudicate plaintiffs' naturalization without unreasonable delay." On August 22, 2008, plaintiffs filed notice to appeal the district court's order to remand.

In April 2009, USCIS and the FBI undertook a "Joint Business Plan" that committed new resources to eliminating the backlog of delayed FBI name checks for naturalization applicants. That month, the appeal was voluntarily dismissed.

In August 2009, the district court denied plaintiffs' motion for attorneys' fees, finding that plaintiffs were not the prevailing parties.

Summary Authors

Jennifer Bronson (11/10/2013)

People


Judge(s)

Benitez, Roger T. (California)

Major, Barbara L. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Chen, Karen S (California)

Dix, Nancy O (California)

Hartman, M Ray (California)

Loy, John David (California)

Riordan, Sean (California)

Tracy, Michael (California)

Wang, Cecillia D (California)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Bunker, John R (District of Columbia)

Judge(s)

Benitez, Roger T. (California)

Major, Barbara L. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Chen, Karen S (California)

Dix, Nancy O (California)

Hartman, M Ray (California)

Loy, John David (California)

Riordan, Sean (California)

Tracy, Michael (California)

Wang, Cecillia D (California)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Bunker, John R (District of Columbia)

Moore, Kathryn L. (District of Columbia)

Norris, Raven M (California)

Stahl, Thomas C. (California)

Wilkins, C Barrington (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Aug. 10, 2009 Docket
1

Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief and Petition for Naturalization Pursuant to 8 U.S.C. Section 1447(B)

2007 WL 2959410

Aug. 22, 2007 Complaint
26

Order Remanding Adjunction of Naturalization Application

Tartakovsky v. Pierre

March 11, 2008 Order/Opinion
19

Notice of Motion and Motion for Class Certification

April 7, 2008 Pleading / Motion / Brief
64

Order Denying Motion for Attorney's Fees and Costs

Aug. 10, 2009 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Tartakovsky v. Pierre

American Civil Liberties Union

On April 3, 2009, the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project, the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties and cooperating counsel at DLA Piper, LLP, settled the Ninth Circuit appeal in Tartakovsky v. Pierre… Aug. 1, 2007 https://www.aclu.org/cases/tartakovsky-v-pierre

Docket

Last updated May 13, 2022

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

State / Territory: California

Case Type(s):

Immigration and/or the Border

Key Dates

Filing Date: Aug. 22, 2007

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Plaintiffs are lawful permanent residents whose naturalization applications were delayed.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

ACLU National (all projects)

ACLU Affiliates (any)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Mooted before ruling

Defendants

Department of Homeland Security, Federal

Federal Bureau of Investigations, Federal

Department of Justice, Federal

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Federal

Defendant Type(s):

Jurisdiction-wide

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.

Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

Immigration/Border:

U.S. citizenship - acquiring