On November 9, 2015, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, by a 2 to 1 margin, blocked much of President Obama’s executive action, specifically the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans, known as DAPA. DAPA would have allowed qualifying parents of U.S. citizens and permanent U.S. residents who have been present in the country since January 1, 2010, to obtain employment authorization and request three years of deferred action from removal from the U.S. The President also sought to extend Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, known as DACA, for three more years.
This decision keeps in place a temporary injunction ordered by Judge Hanen of the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of Texas last July on the ground that the states would be likely to succeed in their claim that DAPA is subject to the Administrative Procedure Act’s requirements – requirements that had not been met. Texas initiated the lawsuit which resulted in the temporary injunction, citing burdens on the state if required to issue drivers’ licenses and provide other benefits like unemployment insurance to DAPA beneficiaries. The lawsuit was supported by 25 other states, including North Carolina.
The Department of Justice responded Monday that it will immediately seek review by the U.S .Supreme Court. Officials in the Obama Administration hope the court will hear the case next spring and issue a favorable ruling, enabling DAPA to begin next summer.