In a 5-3 decision, the highest court of justice made it easier for the government to deport undocumented immigrants who have been in the country for a long time and have not committed serious breaches of the law.
The Supreme Court of Justice ruled (5-3) this Thursday that the federal government can deport undocumented immigrants who have committed minor crimes, a ruling that puts at risk of expulsion foreigners who struggle to remain in the United States and have been in the United States for a long time. the country.
In October, the highest court of justice held a hearing in which the magistrates, after oral arguments, showed greater concern that the ruling could lead to adverse results for undocumented immigrants facing deportation and their families.
Immigration law states that ultimately, undocumented immigrants in removal proceedings who demonstrate that they are eligible for discretionary relief from removal, and argue that their departure from the country would cause extreme suffering to their immediate and extremely unusual family members, they could ask the judge to proceed with an administrative cancellation of the case and grant them permanent legal residence (green card).
Justices Neil Gorsuch, John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Brett Kavanaugh voted in favor, while Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Keagan, and Stephen Breyer voted against. Judge Amy Barret excused herself from ruling.
The magistrates said that the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) “directly places the burden of proof abroad to demonstrate eligibility for relief from deportation,” meaning that from now on it will not be the government who owes demonstrate the ineligibility of the immigrant to remain in the country, but will be the undocumented.
“In this decision, the Supreme Court places the responsibility on the immigrant to show that he does qualify to stop his deportation, regardless of whether the conviction record shows that he committed a crime of moral clumsiness,” explains José Guerrero, an immigration lawyer who practices in Miami (Florida).
“The serious problem is that many people have criminal records, they are either incorrect or incomplete or it could not be determined that he was found guilty. In those cases, the government could not prove that the immigrant was ineligible or deportable and the case would then end, ”he added.
Guerrero also said that, “now with this ruling, it is the immigrant facing the deportation process who has to prove that he qualifies for the immigration benefit, regardless of the criminal record. This will definitely result in more people being deported. ”