Acting Attorney General Whitaker Orders BIA to Refer Two Cases to Him for Review of the Decisions

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has ordered the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA or Board) to refer two cases to him for review of the Board’s decision:

• Matter of L-E-A-, in which the question is whether, and under what circumstances, an alien may establish persecution on account of membership in a “particular social group” under INA § 101(a)(42)(A) [8 USCA § 1101(a)(42)(A)] based on the alien’s membership in a family unit;
• Matter of Castillo-Perez, in which the questions are: (1) In connection with an application for cancellation of removal under INA § 240A(b) [8 USCA § 1229b(b)], what is the appropriate legal standard for determining when an individual lacks “good moral character” under 8 USCA § 1101(f)? (2) What impact should multiple convictions for driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence have in determining when an individual lacks “good moral character” under 8 USCA § 1101(f)? and (3) What impact should multiple such convictions have in determining whether to grant discretionary relief under 8 USCA § 1229b(b)?

In both cases, AG Whitaker invites the parties to the proceedings and interested amici to submit briefs on points relevant to the disposition of the case. The parties’ briefs may not exceed 15,000 words and must be filed on or before January 4, 2019. Interested amici may submit briefs not exceeding 9,000 words on or before January 18, 2019. The parties may submit reply briefs not exceeding 6,000 words on or before January 18, 2019.

All filings must be accompanied by proof of service and submitted both electronically to, and in triplicate to United States Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General, Room 5114, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20530. All briefs must be both submitted electronically and postmarked on or before the pertinent deadlines. Requests for extensions are disfavored.

Note: On December 7, 2018, President Donald Trump indicated that he intends to nominate William Barr to succeed Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Mr. Barr served as Attorney General under former President George H.W. Bush from 1991 to 1993.

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