Last Updated: May 9, 2022

J.O.P. v. DHS, No. 19-1944, is a certified nationwide class action venued in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland challenging a Trump administration policy that limits the ability to seek asylum for certain children who arrived in the country alone. The National Immigration Project, along with Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), Public Counsel, and Goodwin Procter represent the plaintiffs in this case, who came to the United States as unaccompanied children and whose asylum applications would have been rejected by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services under the Trump administration policy. The lawsuit alleges that the challenged policy violates the 5th Amendment, the Administrative Procedure Act, and the 2008 Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act. The court certified a nationwide class and entered an expanded preliminary injunction in December 2020. The J.O.P. case remains pending and the parties have entered into settlement negotiations.

Brief Case Timeline & Key Decisions

  • July 1, 2019: complaint filed
  • August 2, 2019: court issued temporary restraining order enjoining the government from applying the policy
  • October 15, 2019: court issued preliminary injunction enjoining the government from applying the policy
  • December 21, 2020: court certified nationwide class and amended the preliminary injunction order
  • March 2021: USCIS agreed "not to make jurisdiction determinations under INA section 208(b)(3)(C) that rely solely on an UAC redetermination noted in ENFORCE Alien Removal Module or other ICE or DHS systems as terminating a prior UAC determination, unless it documents that ICE placed the individual in ICE custody as an adult detainee."

Key Case Documents