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Immigration Law

CA9 on Briones, Retroactivity, Adjustment of Status: Acosta-Olivarria v. Lynch

"In Garfias-Rodriguez v. Holder, 702 F.3d 504 (9th Cir. 2012) (en banc), we reserved the question whether a noncitizen applying for adjustment of immigration status could reasonably rely on an opinion of this court during a period in which the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”) had issued a decision that was in tension with our opinion but before the BIA issued a decision directly disagreeing with our opinion. See id. at 522. We now answer that question with respect to Petitioner Acosta-Olivarria and hold that he reasonably relied on the law of this circuit when he applied for adjustment of status during that period. ... Applying the Montgomery Ward retroactivity analysis to Acosta-Olivarria’s case, we hold that the BIA’s decision in In re Briones, 24 I. & N. Dec. 355 (B.I.A. 2007), does not apply retroactively to bar his application. ... For the foregoing reasons, we GRANT the petition for review and REMAND with instructions to reinstate the IJ’s 2006 order granting adjustment of status." - Acosta-Olivarria v. Lynch, Aug. 26, 2015.  [Hats off to Gary Finn!  Watch the oral argument here or here.]