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Case Name Catholic Charities v. Chertoff IM-CA-0017
Docket / Court 3:07-cv-01307-PJH ( N.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Attorney Organization Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law
Case Summary
On March 6, 2007, a coalition of social justice and immigrant rights groups, led by Catholic Charities CYO, filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, seeking declaratory and injunctive relief compelling the federal government to implement the " ... read more >
On March 6, 2007, a coalition of social justice and immigrant rights groups, led by Catholic Charities CYO, filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, seeking declaratory and injunctive relief compelling the federal government to implement the "U" visa program. The U visa program was part of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(15)(U), ("VTVPA"), which permitted immigrants who were victims of serious crimes and who assisted law enforcement to apply for and receive U visas. Immigrants holding a U visa for three years could apply for lawful permanent resident status. Plaintiffs alleged that for six years the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services ("USCIS") failed to implement the U visa program, thereby denying immigrant benefits that Congress intended. Plaintiffs alleged claims under the Victims Protection Act of 2000, 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(15)(U); the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1103; the Violence Against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act of 2005; the Administrative Procedure Act, §§ 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.; the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution; and Article II, §§ 1 and 3, of the United States Constitution. Attorneys with the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, the Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach, the Sanctuary for Families, the Brooklyn Family Justice Center, the Public Law Center, the API Legal Outreach and the Central American Resource Center represented plaintiffs.

The government moved to dismiss the entire case on grounds which included lack of standing, lack of jurisdiction, and failure to state a claim.

On August 16, 2007, the District Court (Judge Phyllis J. Hamilton) granted the government's motion to dismiss in part as to plaintiffs' claims under Article II of the Constitution. The motion was denied as to all other claims. The Court ordered the government to file a monthly report outlining the status of enacting the regulations at issue. Catholic Charities CYO v. Chertoff, 2007 WL 2344995 (N.D.Cal. Aug. 16, 2007).

On February 20, 2008, plaintiffs filed an amended complaint, which defendants moved to dismiss on March 31, 2008.

On December 22, 2008, the court granted defendants' motion to dismiss. Catholic Charities CYO v. Chertoff, 622 F. Supp. 2d 865 (N.D. Cal. 2008) aff'd sub nom. Catholic Charities CYO v. Napolitano, 368 F. App'x 750 (9th Cir. 2010). The court found that: (1) plaintiffs' claims as to failure to implement the visa program or issue necessary regulations were moot; (2) plaintiffs lacked standing to challenge delay in promulgating necessary regulations or failure to grant visas; (3) plaintiffs' claims regarding derivative visa eligibility were moot in light of a guidance document by USCIS; (4) VTVPA provided no private cause of action for imposition of unreasonable requirements for law enforcement certifications (LECs) and refusal to issue employment authorizations; (5) plaintiffs lacked standing to challenge failure to issue LECs; and (6) plaintiffs' due process and equal protection rights were not violated by failure to timely implement program.

Plaintiffs appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on February 11, 2008. While the appeal was pending, the district court entered final judgment on August 6, 2009.

On February 25, 2010, the Court of Appeals (Judges Alex Kozinksi, David R. Thompson, M. Margaret McKeown) affirmed the district court's dismissal of plaintiffs' claims. Catholic Charities CYO v. Napolitano, 368 F. App'x 750 (9th Cir. 2010).

Dan Dalton - 11/06/2007
Jennifer Bronson - 12/13/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Immigration/Border
Constitutional rights
U.S. citizenship - acquiring
Visas - criteria
Visas - procedures
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) U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description All persons who are prima facie eligible for a U visa and who have or would have applied for one but for defendants’ failure to issue U visas or promulgate regulations implementing § 1512 of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Unknown
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Case Ongoing No
Docket(s)
3:07-cv-01307-PJH (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0017-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/20/2010
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [Class Action]
IM-CA-0017-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/06/2007
Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion for Class Certification [ECF# 12]
IM-CA-0017-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/18/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 16] (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0017-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/09/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting in Part and Denying in Part Motion to Dismiss [ECF# 33] (2007 WL 2344995 / 2007 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 62732) (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0017-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 08/16/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
First Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 45]
IM-CA-0017-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/20/2008
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Motion to Dismiss [ECF# 56] (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0017-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/22/2008
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum [Ct. of App. ECF# 79] (368 Fed.Appx. 750)
IM-CA-0017-0008.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 02/25/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Hamilton, Phyllis Jean (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0017-0002 | IM-CA-0017-0003 | IM-CA-0017-0006 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Kozinski, Alex (Ninth Circuit)
IM-CA-0017-0008
McKeown, M. Margaret (Ninth Circuit)
IM-CA-0017-0008
Thompson, David R. (Ninth Circuit)
IM-CA-0017-0008
Plaintiff's Lawyers Babcock, Kenneth William (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Bustamante, Andres Z. (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Dinnerstein, Julie E. (New York)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Eyster, James Parry (Michigan)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Holguín, Carlos R. (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Holguin, Charles Rudolph (California)
IM-CA-0017-9000
Hwang, Victor Murray (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Kreymann, Kirsten Marie (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Lee, Ivy Chloe (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Lucas, Cynthia (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Schey, Peter A. (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Sharp, Daniel Joseph (California)
IM-CA-0017-0001 | IM-CA-0017-0004 | IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Viramontes, Angela (California)
IM-CA-0017-0005 | IM-CA-0017-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Deiss, Ila Casy (California)
IM-CA-0017-9000
Lawrence, Victor M. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0017-9000
Robins, Jeffrey S (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0017-9000

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