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APA Challenges

Attorneys Using APA Challenges to Advocate for Better Immigration Policy

APA Claims Attorneys

The APA governs how federal agencies make rules and adjudications. When IMMpact Litigation believes that an immigration agency has stepped outside its bounds and improperly followed rulemaking procedures, we might challenge the matter by bringing an APA claim. 

What is an APA Claim?

In recent years, there has been an increasing amount of federal litigation involving immigration law and policy. One way that federal litigation can be initiated to challenge immigration laws outside of immigration court is by filing a claim under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). IMMpact Litigation, a team of three immigration law firms, is ready to file APA claims when needed to protect the rights of individuals and bring down wrongful immigration action and laws in the U.S.

These claims are filed in federal district court – not immigration court – which can level the playing field a bit. The claims can seek injunctive relief to halt the enforcement of a particular immigration law or rule or overturn specific actions by immigration agencies. 

There is generally a six-year statute of limitations that applies to APA actions, which means the claim must be prepared and filed within six years of the immigration agency action that is being challenged. 

Types of APA Claims

Some common APA claims regarding immigration law include:

Violation of notice and comment rulemaking – This claim applies when an agency does not follow the requirements for legislative rulemaking, which include providing adequate notice to the public of the proposed rule and allowing proper time for the public to submit written comments regarding the rule. 

Arbitrary and capricious agency action – This legal standard generally applies to agency rule changes and factual determinations during the rulemaking process. Claims might be filed when a claimant believes an agency acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner. 

Agency not in accordance with the law – This claim might apply when actions by an immigration agency do one of the following:

  • Go against a constitutional right, immunity, privilege, or power
  • Fall short of statutory authority or rights
  • Overstep statutory authority, jurisdiction, or restrictions
  • Otherwise goes against a federal law, regulation, or the United States Constitution

Unreasonable delay – When an immigration agency causes an unreasonable delay in making decisions or conclusions on matters that others present to the agency. This helps to ensure the timely processing of immigration applications and other petitions. 

This being said, there are also limitations on APA claims and what they can challenge, as well as requirements to exhaust administrative options for relief before turning to federal courts to rule on an APA claim. The court further cannot review agency actions that are not yet final or actions taken by the U.S. President, which has been relevant during recent administrations when it comes to immigration actions and policies. 

Advocating for Better Immigration Policy Through APA Challenges

As you can see, APA challenges are often more complex than a typical immigration case. That’s why the team of IMMpact Litigation has joined together to offer strong challenges to U.S. immigration agencies when they act wrongfully. We will not hesitate to bring federal litigation when necessary to protect the rights of clients and immigrants everywhere. 

IMMpact Litigation is currently representing clients in several class-action suits, including challenges under APA. To see if you may qualify to join one of these cases as a named plaintiff, visit our mass litigation Onboarding page.

Through strategic litigation we can be the voice for equality and a more just legal system.

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