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Government asks judge to drop immigration contempt hearing

| Aug 6, 2015 | Employment Immigration

California readers may be interested to learn that the Obama administration has asked a Texas judge to drop a contempt hearing over work permits mistakenly issued in violation of a court order halting President Barack Obama’s controversial immigration initiative. The court hearing is scheduled for later in August.

According to court filings, the government has corrected a federal computer database that allowed the error to take place and all but 22 of the 2,500 improper work permits have been retrieved. Lawyers for the administration said those actions should be sufficient to call off the contempt hearing.

In November, Obama announced a unilateral change to the U.S. immigration policy to allow as many as 5 million undocumented immigrants to stay in the country and obtain three-year work permits if they met certain conditions. In response, 26 states sued the government, claiming that the program would force them to provide Social Security, Medicare and other benefits. The states allege the cost of providing such services would cost hundreds of millions of dollars and would be unrecoverable should the program later be ruled illegal. A Texas judge blocked the program from moving forward until the lawsuit went to trial. On July 10, the government made oral arguments to overturn that decision before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, but a ruling has not yet come down.

Employment immigration issues can be complex and subject to strict deadlines. California workers and vocational students in need of work visas may benefit by consulting with an attorney to ensure that all required documents are included and are filed in a timely manner.

Source: Bloomberg, “U.S. Asks Judge to Drop Immigration Plan Contempt Hearing,” Laurel Calkins, August 1, 2015

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