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Immigration Law

CA9 on APA, U Visas: Perez Perez v. Wolf

Perez Perez v. Wolf

"Pedro Tomas Perez Perez brought suit in the district court under the Administrative Procedure Act (“APA”), challenging the denial of his U visa petition by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (“USCIS”). The district court dismissed Perez’s action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The district court held that § 701(a)(2) of the APA precludes judicial review because U visa determinations are “committed to agency discretion by law.” 5 U.S.C. § 701(a)(2). On appeal, Perez argues that § 701(a)(2) does not apply, contending that the statutory and regulatory framework governing U visa determinations affords “meaningful standards” for reviewing his claims. Heckler v. Chaney, 470 U.S. 821, 834 (1985). We hold that § 701(a)(2) does not bar judicial review of Perez’s APA claims. We hold, further, after sua sponte consideration, that § 1252(a)(2)(B)(ii) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (“IIRIRA”) does not strip jurisdiction over Perez’s action. We reverse and remand."

[Hats way off to Henry Cruz!]