University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Tartakovsky v. Pierre IM-CA-0072
Docket / Court 3:07-cv-01667 ( S.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Immigration
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National (all projects)
Case Summary
On August 22, 2007, lawful permanent residents whose naturalization adjudications had been delayed more than 120 days filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of California against the DHS, FBI, DOJ, and USCIS. Plaintiffs alleged that the delay in adjudicating their naturalization applications ... read more >
On August 22, 2007, lawful permanent residents whose naturalization adjudications had been delayed more than 120 days filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of California against the DHS, FBI, DOJ, and USCIS. Plaintiffs alleged that the delay in adjudicating their naturalization applications violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 USC 1447(b)), which requires applications to be adjudicated within 120 days. Plaintiffs also claimed that defendants had violated the Administrative Procedures Act for unreasonable and extraordinary delay in adjudication and for failure to follow notice-and-comment requirements. Finally, they brought a claim for violation of due process.

The plaintiffs sought class certification on behalf of "[a]ll persons residing within the Southern District of California who have submitted or will submit applications for naturalization to CIS, and who have met all statutory requirements for naturalization, and whose applications for naturalization are not adjudicated within 120 days of the date of their naturalization examinations." They sought declaratory and injunctive relief. They also asked to be naturalized by the district court.

The ACLU brought the lawsuit as part of a nationwide effort to challenge systemic delays in naturalization caused by the USCIS decision to expand dramatically the databases used for the FBI name check. Using this over-inclusive database caused prolonged delays for lawful permanent residents who applied for citizenship.

On March 11, 2008, the District Court (Judge Roger T. Benitez) dismissed plaintiffs' claims with respect to the unreasonable delays, the notice-and-comment procedures, and due process. The court remanded the named plaintiffs' naturalization applications to the agency "with instructions that USCIS adjudicate plaintiffs' naturalization without unreasonable delay." On August 22, 2008, plaintiffs filed notice to appeal the district court's order to remand.

In April 2009, USCIS and the FBI undertook a "Joint Business Plan" that committed new resources to eliminating the backlog of delayed FBI name checks for naturalization applicants. That month, the appeal was voluntarily dismissed.

In August 2009, the district court denied plaintiffs' motion for attorneys' fees, finding that plaintiffs were not the prevailing parties.

Jennifer Bronson - 11/10/2013


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Immigration
U.S. citizenship - acquiring
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.
Defendant(s) Department of Homeland Security
Department of Justice
Federal Bureau of Investigations
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are lawful permanent residents whose naturalization applications were delayed.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National (all projects)
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Moot
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
Case Studies Threats to the Future of the Immigration Class Action
Washington University Journal of Law and Policy
By: Jill E. Family (Widener University School of Law)
Citation: 27 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol'y 71 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
3:07-cv-1667 (S.D. Cal.) 08/10/2009
IM-CA-0072-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief and Petition for Naturalization Pursuant to 8 U.S.C. Section 1447(B) 08/22/2007 (2007 WL 2959410)
IM-CA-0072-0001.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Remanding Adjunction of Naturalization Application 03/11/2008 (S.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0072-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Motion and Motion for Class Certification 04/07/2008
IM-CA-0072-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Denying Motion for Attorney's Fees and Costs 08/10/2009 (S.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0072-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Benitez, Roger T. (S.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
IM-CA-0072-0003 | IM-CA-0072-0004 | IM-CA-0072-9000
Major, Barbara L. (S.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
IM-CA-0072-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Chen, Karen S (California)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Dix, Nancy O (California)
IM-CA-0072-0001 | IM-CA-0072-0002 | IM-CA-0072-9000
Hartman, M Ray (California)
IM-CA-0072-0002 | IM-CA-0072-9000
Loy, John David (California)
IM-CA-0072-0001 | IM-CA-0072-0002 | IM-CA-0072-9000
Riordan, Sean (California)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Tracy, Michael (California)
IM-CA-0072-0002
Wang, Cecillia D (California)
IM-CA-0072-0001 | IM-CA-0072-0002 | IM-CA-0072-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Bunker, John R (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Moore, Kathryn L. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Norris, Raven M (California)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Stahl, Thomas C. (California)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Wilkins, C Barrington (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0072-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -