Immigration Law

Ninth Circuit Says Federal Immigration Law Preempts Arizona's Attempt to Deny DLs to DACA Recipients: ADAC v. Brewer

ADAC v. Brewer, Apr. 5, 2016 - "In sum, we find that DACA recipients are similarly situated in all relevant respects to other noncitizens eligible for drivers’ licenses under Arizona’s policy. And Arizona’s refusal to rely on EADs from DACA recipients for purposes of establishing eligibility for drivers’ licenses may well violate the Equal Protection Clause for lack of a rational governmental interest justifying the distinction relied upon. Invoking the constitutional avoidance doctrine, we construe the INA as occupying the field of Arizona’s classification of noncitizens with regard to whether their presence is authorized by federal law, and as therefore preempting states from engaging in their very own categorization of immigrants for the purpose of denying some of them drivers’ licenses. Plaintiffs have shown that they suffer irreparable harm from Arizona’s policy and that remedies at law are inadequate to compensate for that harm. Plaintiffs have also shown that a remedy in equity is warranted and that the public interest would not be disserved by a permanent injunction.

Accordingly, we AFFIRM the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Plaintiffs. We also AFFIRM the district court’s order entering a permanent injunction that enjoins Arizona’s policy of denying the EADs issued under the DACA program as satisfactory proof of authorized presence under federal law in the United States."

[Hats way off to:  Karen Tumlin (argued), Shiu-Ming Cheer, Nicholas Espiritu, Linton Joaquin, and Nora A. Preciado, National Immigration Law Center, Los Angeles, CA; Tanya Broder, National Immigration Law Center, Oakland, CA; Jorge Martin Castillo and Victor Viramontes, Mexican American Legal Defense Educational Fund, Los Angeles, CA; Rodkangyil Danjuma, ACLU Foundation of Northern California, San Francisco, CA; Lee Gelernt and Michael K.T. Tan, American Civil Liberties Union, New York, NY; James Lyall and Daniel J. Pochoda, ACLU of Arizona, Phoenix, AZ; Jennifer C. Newell and Cecillia D. Wang, American Civil Liberties Union Foundation Immigrants’ Rights Project, San Francisco, CA; Kelly Flood, ASU Alumni Law Group, Phoenix, AZ, for Plaintiffs-Appellees.]