Ramirez v. Dougherty - Ninth Circuit

Temporary Protected Status and Adjustment of Status


March 31, 2017

The Council, with the American Immigration Lawyers Association, filed an amicus brief with the Ninth Circuit in Ramirez v. Brown, arguing that a grant of TPS satisfies the “admission” requirement for adjustment of status under INA § 245(a) and that, as a result, an individual who entered without inspection and later received a grant of TPS has been “admitted” and may adjust to lawful permanent resident status if otherwise eligible. In a precedent decision issued on March 31, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed. The Ninth Circuit specifically held that this was the plain meaning of the TPS statute, INA § 244(f)(4), which states that, for purposes of adjustment of status under INA § 245(a), a noncitizen “shall be considered as being in, and maintaining, lawful status as a nonimmigrant.” The Court found that an individual could only “be in” lawful nonimmigrant status if first “admitted” to that status, and thus § 244(f)(4) necessarily meant that the TPS recipient had been admitted. In so holding, the Ninth Circuit joined the Sixth Circuit. Ramirez v. Brown,  852 F.3d 954 (9th Cir. 2017).   

For more on this issue, see our Practice Advisory, Court Decisions Ensure TPS Holders in Sixth and Ninth Circuits May Become Permanent Residents.

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