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Feds Withdraw Guilford College Appeal

August 05, 2020 (1 min read)

DHS has withdrawn its appeal to the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.  Thus, the Feb. 6, 2020 permanent nationwide injunction is the final word.  Here is Ron Klasko's Feb. 18, 2020 essay on why the decision is so important.

Statement by the Presidents' Alliance - Administration Retreats – for Now – on Flawed Unlawful Presence Policy for International Students, Aug. 3, 2020

Policy would have had devastating impact on international students

"Today, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ended litigation around the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s unlawful presence (ULP) policy by dismissing the appeal to a lower court’s decision to preliminary enjoin the administration’s unlawful presence policy. Previously, U.S. District Judge Loretta Biggs issued a decision permanently enjoining the new unlawful presence policy, as laid out in the policy memorandum entitled Accrual of Unlawful Presence and F, J, and M Nonimmigrants; and DHS initially appealed only to reverse course and ask for the case to be dismissed last week. The Presidents’ Alliance is extremely gratified by this development and we express deep appreciation to our Members who served as plaintiffs in the litigation, led by Paul Hughes, now of McDermott Will & Emery; and the 65 higher education institutions and system Board that signed on as amici. Under DHS’s proposed ULP policy, international students and scholars would incur significant immigration consequences for minor, administrative errors. For more information on the ULP policy, see NAFSA’s resource page.

Jane Fernandes, Guilford College, Steering Committee Member, stated: “Through their attempt to revise the unlawful presence policy, the administration sought to enact an ‘invisible wall’ that would have made the lives of our international students more precarious and substantially undermined our nation’s competitiveness in attracting international students and scholars. The government’s decision to fold and not pursue an appeal represents a small step towards restoring our nation’s role as a leader in training international talent. While we expect the administration to try again and enact a substantially similar flawed policy through regulation, these developments represent an important victory for international students and scholars; and the institutions that welcome them.”