Litigation Documents & Resources Related to Trump Policy on Family Separations

The Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant parents and children at the U.S. border has generated several legal challenges. On June 20, 2018, President Trump signed an executive order announcing the administration's preference to detain families together while continuing to prosecute all cases of illegal border crossings referred to the Justice Department. The order requires Attorney General Jeff Sessions to seek a revision to the consent decree on detention of young children reached in Flores v. Reno.

Below is a roundup of all relevant documents in ongoing litigation related to the administration’s policy on immigration detention, including the government’s request to modify the Flores settlement, along with key legal documents from past litigation. We will update this post as further information comes in.

This post is maintained by Victoria Clark and Quinta Jurecic. Any queries or additional documents should be directed to [email protected].

 

Judgments in illegal entry prosecutions

Compilation of 2,598 written judgments in illegal entry cases from mid-May 2018 through June 2018. Documents collected and provided by Brad Heath at USA Today.

 

Ongoing cases

Ms. L v. ICE (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California)

In light of the Executive Order issued today, June 20, 2018, entitled “Affording Congress an Opportunity to Address Family Separation, a telephonic status conference shall be held on June 22, 2018 at 12:00 p.m.)

  • Minute Entry (06/22/2018)

Telephonic Status Conference held on 6/22/2018. Plaintiff to file additional briefing by 6/25/2018. Defense to file response by 6/27/2018 4:30pm PST.

For purposes of the telephonic status conference scheduled for 7/6/2018 at 12:00 p.m., the Court has set up a dial in number for counsel and any members of the news media that wish to attend.

Status Conference set for 7/9/2018 10:00 AM in Courtroom 13A before Judge Dana M. Sabraw. 

A Status Conference is set for 7/9/2018 at 10:00 AM before Judge Dana M. Sabraw

Status Conference held on 7/9/2018. (Further Status Conference set for 7/10/2018 11:00 AM in Courtroom 13A before Judge Dana M. Sabraw.)

Status Conference is set for 7/10/2018 at 11:00 AM before Judge Dana M. Sabraw. Signed by Judge Dana M. Sabraw on 7/9/2018

Status Hearing held on 7/10/2018. (Further Status Conference set for 7/13/2018 01:00 PM in Courtroom 13A before Judge Dana M. Sabraw.)

Status Conference held on 7/13/2018. Further Status Conference set for 7/16/2018 at 9:30 AM before Judge Dana M. Sabraw. 

Status Conference held on 7/16/2018. Motion (110) to Stay Removal and Emergency TRO - Stay is Granted. Defense to respond to Motion for TRO by 7/23/2018 9:00 AM. The motion will be heard at the Status Conference set for 7/24/2018 4:00 PM. Witness, Cmdr Jonathan White C/S/T. Court to issue order.

Mejia-Mejia v. ICE (U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia)

The parties shall appear for a hearing on plaintiff's emergency motion 4 for a temporary restraining order on June 21, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. in Courtroom 29A before Judge Paul L. Friedman. Signed by Judge Paul L. Friedman on June 20, 2018. (lcplf1) 

  • Memorandum in Opposition to Motion for Temporary Restraining Order (06/21/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Motion for Temporary Restarining Order Denied (for reasons discussed on the record) (06/21/2018) (Access restricted) 
  • Joint Status Report (06/22/2018) (Access Restricted) 
  • Minute order (06/22/2018) 

Upon the representation of the parties in their joint status report, plaintiff's emergency motion for a temporary restraining order is denied as moot. Plaintiff shall inform the Court of the manner in which she intends to proceed in this case on or before June 29, 2018.

  • Notice of Intent to Continue Prosecuting Case by Beata Mariana De Jesus Mejia-Mejia (06/29/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Amended Complaint (07/13/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Note: Access to this filing is restricted. However, Politico reports that the filing states that Mejia-Mejia will be reunited with her son as of June 21, 2018:

"ORR has already begun the process of conducting the necessary checks to fulfill its statutory mandate to assure itself that Plaintiff...is capable of providing for the child's physical and mental well-being," the government lawyers said. "ORR expects to be able to release [the boy] to Plaintiffs' custody, once those checks can be completed."​

MGU v. Nielsen (U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia)

The parties shall appear for a hearing on plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary restraining order on June 27, 2018 at 2:00 P.M. in Courtroom 29A before Judge Paul L. Friedman. The defendants may file a written response to plaintiffs’ motion on or before noon on June 27, 2018.

The parties shall submit a joint report proposing a briefing schedule for plaintiff’s motion for a preliminary injunction on or before June 27, 2018 at 12:00 P.M. The joint report shall specify the following: (1) the due date of the United States’ response to plaintiffs’ motion; (2) the due date of plaintiffs’ reploy in support of their motion; (3) proposed dates and times for a hearing on the motion during the week of July 9, 2018 or July 16, 2018.

Hearing on Temporary Restraining Order Set For 6/27/2018 at 2:00 PM in Courtroom 29A Before Judge Paul L. Friedman

  • Set/Reset Hearing (06/26/2018)

Defendant’s Response to Motion for Preliminary Injunction due by 7/6/2018; Plaintiff’s Reply due by 7/9/2018; Preliminary Injunction Hearing set for 7/12/2018 at 10:30 AM in Courtroom 29A before Judge Paul L. Friedman

Motion Hearing held on 6/27/2018 re Motion for Temporary Restraining Order. Motion held in Abeyance for reasons stated on the record. Joint Status Report due by 7/5/2018.

Directing defendants to respond to plaintiffs’ emergency motion for expedited discovery on or before Friday, July 6, 2018.

  • Joint Status Report Concerning TRO Application, ECF No. 8 by A.P.F., E.F., M.G.U. (07/05/2018)
  • Minute Order (07/06/2018)

In advance of the hearing on July 12, 2018, the parties are invited to file submissions no longer than five pages each, addressing the relevance, if any, of Damus v. Nielsen, Civil Action No. 18-578, 2018 WL 3232515 (D.D.C. July 2, 2018), to the issues in this case. Signed by Judge Paul L. Friedman on July 6, 2018.

Directing plaintiffs to file a reply in support of their emergency motion for expedited discovery on or before 12:00 p.m. on Monday, July 9, 2018.

At the hearing on July 12, 2018, the parties shall be prepared to address both Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction and Plaintiffs' Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order. Signed by Judge Paul L. Friedman on July 9, 2018. 

Argument heard and motion taken under advisement. Oral motion for stay of plaintiff E.F.s removal from the United States until plaintiffs intentions are clarified, is taken under advisement. Declaration of Ms. Martinez and plaintiff E.F. to be filed by 7/13/18. Status report regarding asylum application of plaintiff E.F. and status of removal order to be filed by defendants by 7/13/18. Status report regarding credible fear interview of plaintiff A.P.F to be filed by defendants by 7/13/18. Revised proposed order regarding plaintiffs motion for temporary restraining order to be filed by 7/13/18. Relevant status reports submitted in the Ms. L. class action on or after 7/12/18, to be promptly filed in this action by defendants. Order to follow. 

Flores v. Sessions (U.S. District Court for the Central District of California)

On June 21, 2018, Defendants filed an Ex Parte Application seeking to modify certain aspects of the Flores Agreement. On June 22, 2018, Plaintiffs filed an Application requesting: (1) a hearing on Defendants Ex Parte Application with a new briefing schedule, or (2) a ten-day extension in Plaintiff's deadline to file a response to Defendants' Ex Parte Application. Good cause appearing, Plaintiff's Application is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART. Plaintiffs may file a response to Defenants' Ex Parte Application no later than June 27, 2018.

It is hereby ordered that the ex parte application of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project and ACLU Foundation of Southern California to file a brief of amici curiae is GRANTED, and the proposed brief submitted with the motion shall be e-filed within three (3) days of this order.

On June 29, 2018, the City of Los Angeles, the City of Chicago, the City of New York, and the City & County of San Francisco ("the Cities") filed an Ex Parte Application seeking leave to file a brief as amicus curiae. Pursuant to this Court's Initial Standing Order, any party intending to oppose the Ex Parte Application was required to file an opposition by July 2, 2018. See Initial Standing Order at 9 107 . No such opposition has been filed. Accordingly, the Court GRANTS the Cities' Ex Parte Application, and ORDERS the Cities to file the proposed amicus brief found in Docket Entry No. 451-1 within three (3) days of the date of this Order. See C.D. Cal. L.R. 7-12 ("The failure to file any required document, or the failure to file it within the deadline, may be deemed consent to the granting or denial of [a] motion...."). IT IS SO ORDERED.

W.S.R. v. Sessions et al (U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois), Case 1:18-cv-04265 

  • Complaint (06/20/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Case Assigned to the Honorable Edmond E. Chang (06/20/2018)  
  • Motion by Defendants to Reassign Case (06/22/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute entry: (06/22/2018) 

On the Federal Defendants' motion to reassign 18 C 4291, there is no statement of conferral with counsel for Plaintiffs, as required by Judge Chang's Case Management Procedures. (There is no appearance on file for Defendant Heartland Alliance, so the conferral requirement is excused as to that party.) By 06/26/2018, the Federal Defendants shall file a concise supplement stating the result of that conferral, or if no conferral has occurred, why not.

  • Supplement to Motion to Reassign Case (06/22/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (06/26/2017)

Without objection, the Federal Defendants have moved to reassign Case No. 18 C 4291 under Local Rule 40.4. The cases substantially overlap, but factually (the same Defendants and the same custodial location) and legally (primarily, the interpretation of the Flores Settlement Agreement). So there would be a substantial savings in judicial time and effort, Local Rule 40.4(b)(2), for the same judge to handle both cases, and both cases can be put on the same litigation track with simultaneous court hearings. The motion thus is granted. AN initial status hearing is set for 07/11/2018 at 10:45 a.m.

  • Amended Complaint (06/27/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (06/28/2018)

Plaintiff’s counsel called the courtroom deputy to report that Plaintiff will be filing an emergency motion and to ask for a time to present the motion tomorrow (06/29/2018). The motion hearing is set for 10 a.m. on 06/29/2018. Any out-of-town counsel may appear by telephone by providing a contact number to the courtroom deputy.

For the reasons stated in the Order and during the motion hearing, Plaintiff’s motion for TRO is granted in part and converted to a preliminary-injunction motion in part. Motion hearing set for 07/05/2018 at 10:00AM. The Court notes that Plaintiff’s motion states that the West Texas Defendants will be voluntarily dismissed in light of the change in detention location. The government also will confer with Plaintiff’s counsel on facilitating counsel’s access to Plaintiff’s father and on facilitating communication between Plaintiff and his father.

  • Minute Entry (06/29/2018)

On scheduling, the current briefing schedule calls for a defense response on 07/02/2018 and for Plaintiff’s reply on 07/04/2018 by 5 p.m., with the hearing set for 07/05/2018 at 10 a.m. If Plaintiff’s counsel wants extra time to file the reply, specifically until 2 p.m. on 07/05/2018, then the Court can hold the motion hearing on 07/06/2018 at 10 a.m. If Plaintiff wishes to adjust the schedule in this way, then counsel shall notify defense counsel and the courtroom deputy of that decision by 12 p.m. on 07/03/2018. Any counsel may participate by phone in the hearing (regardless of when it is held) by providing a contact number to the courtroom deputy the business day before. Lastly, the upcoming briefs may be combined to address both 18-cv-4265 and 18-cv-4291 (there is no need to write individualized responses/replies for the respective cases.

  • Notice of Voluntary Dismissal by W.S.R. of Defendants Heartland Alliance International, LLC, Susan Trudeau, LaSalle Corrections West, LLC and Mike Sheppard (06/30/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Memorandum in Opposition to Motion for Temporary Restraining Order (07/02/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Reply by W.S.R. to Motion by Plaintiff W.S.R. for Temporary Restraining Order, Memorandum in Opposition to Motion (07/04/2018) (Access restricted) 
  • Affidavit of Karen L Hoffmann Attaching Immigration Judge Bond Orders (07/05/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Minute Entry (07/05/2018)

Hearing held on Plaintiffs' motions for preliminary injunction. The Court takes the motions under advisement. By 07/06/2018, Plaintiffs shall upload (to the 18-cv-4265 docket is sufficient) the written decisions of the four immigration judges referenced during the hearing. By 07/06/2018, the government shall upload its filing made in the Flores consent-decree case. The Court held a brief under-seal portion of the hearing with W.S.R., who was assisted by a Portuguese-English interpreter. The status hearing of 07/11/2018 remains in place. 

  • Supplement to Motion Hearing (07/05/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Supplement to Motion for Temporary Restraining Order, Reply in Response to Motion, and Request for Emergency Hearing (07/06/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/06/2018)

In light of Plaintiff's supplement filed today, the Court will alert the parties if a further hearing by telephone is deemed necessary. The Court notes that, on the current record, the government has not expressed any doubt on the father-son relationship asserted by W.S.R., nor has it offered any evidence that reunification would pose a danger to W.S.R.

  • Response by Plaintiff W.S.R. to Defendants’ Notice (07/11/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/11/2018)

Status hearing held. The government reported that it is committed to complying with the reunification order, which requires reunification by 1:48 p.m. on 07/12/2018. Government counsel also shall notify Plaintiffs' counsel, via e-mail, of the details of the transfer from ORR to ICE, the reunification location and, if applicable, the circumstances of the release, within 30 minutes of government counsel learning that information. A status hearing is set for 07/13/2018 at 10 a.m. But if the government filed, by 6 p.m. the evening of 07/12/2018, a status report that the reunification has occurred, then the status hearing will be reset for the week of 07/23 to discuss what remains of the litigation here.

  • Motion by Plaintiff W.S.R. For Protective Order Pursuant to F.R.C.P. 5.2(e)(1) (07/12/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Minute Entry (07/12/2018)

Plaintiffs' unopposed motion for protective order is granted. The Court will undertake a review on how to effectuate the redactions. 

  • Status Report (07/12/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/12/2018)

In light of the status report confirming that reunification occurred before the deadline, the status hearing of 07/13/2018 is reset to 07/25/2018 at 08:45 a.m. The parties shall confer on what they believe is the next step of the litigation and file a joint status report (with competing positions, if necessary) on 07/23/2018. 

  • Note: Access to this case is restricted. However, according to USA Today, the lawsuit claims that W.S.R. and his father:

were told they would be separated for “two or three days, five at most,” and that they would then be deported … Instead, the father is being held at West Texas Detention Facility in Sierra Blanca, Texas, and W.S.R. is in the care of Heartland Alliance in Chicago. The two allege they were seeking asylum in the U.S. after “the boss of a drug trafficking mafia threatened to kill” them. The drug boss believed that the two provided police with information that resulted in his arrest.

C.D.A. v. Sessions et al (U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois)

  • Complaint (06/20/2018) 
  • Case assigned to the Honorable Elaine E. Bucklo (06/21/2018) 
  • Minute entry: (06/25/2018)

Status hearing set for 7/5/2018 at 9:30 a.m.

  • Executive Committee Order (06/26/2018)

Case reassigned to the Honorable Edmond E. Chang for all further proceedings. Honorable Elaine E. Bucklo no longer assigned to the case pursuant to Local Rule 40.4.

  • Minute Entry (06/27/2018)

An initial status hearing is set for 07/11/2018 at 10:45 a.m.

Plaintiff’s counsel called the courtroom deputy to report that Plaintiff will be filing an emergency motion and to ask for a time to present the motion tomorrow (06/29/2018). The motion hearing is set for 10 a.m. on 06/29/2018. Any out-of-town counsel may appear by telephone by providing a contact number to the courtroom deputy.

For the reasons stated in the Order and during the motion hearing, Plaintiff’s motion for TRO is granted in part and converted to a preliminary-injunction motion in part. Motion hearing set for 07/05/2018 at 10:00AM. The Court notes that Plaintiff’s motion states that the West Texas Defendants will be voluntarily dismissed in light of the change in detention location. The government also will confer with Plaintiff’s counsel on facilitating counsel’s access to Plaintiff’s father and on facilitating communication between Plaintiff and his father.

  • Minute Entry (06/29/2018)

On scheduling, the current briefing schedule calls for a defense response on 07/02/2018 and for Plaintiff’s reply on 07/04/2018 by 5 p.m., with the hearing set for 07/05/2018 at 10 a.m. If Plaintiff’s counsel wants extra time to file the reply, specifically until 2 p.m. on 07/05/2018, then the Court can hold the motion hearing on 07/06/2018 at 10 a.m. If Plaintiff wishes to adjust the schedule in this way, then counsel shall notify defense counsel and the courtroom deputy of that decision by 12 p.m. on 07/03/2018. Any counsel may participate by phone in the hearing (regardless of when it is held) by providing a contact number to the courtroom deputy the business day before. Lastly, the upcoming briefs may be combined to address both 18-cv-4265 and 18-cv-4291 (there is no need to write individualized responses/replies for the respective cases.

  • Notice of Voluntary Dismissal by C.D.A. of Defendants Heartland Alliance International, LLC and Susan Trudeau (06/30/2018) (Access restricted) Motion by Defendants for Leave to File Excess Pages (07/02/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute entry (07/02/2018):

The government’s motion for leave to file excess pages is granted. The response may consume as many pages as needed (based on the current estimate of around 20 pages). Plaintiff’s reply ma yuse the same number of pages as the response.

  • Memorandum in Opposition to Motion for temporary restraining order (07/02/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Reply by C.D.A. to Motion by Plaintiff C.D.A. for Temporary Restraining Order Memorandum in Opposition to Motion (07/04/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Affidavit of Karen L Hoffman Attaching Immigration Judge Bond Orders (07/05/2018) (Access restricted)

  • Minute Entry (07/05/2018)

Hearing held on Plaintiffs' motions for preliminary injunction. The Court takes the motions under advisement. By 07/06/2018, Plaintiffs shall upload (to the 18-cv-4265 docket is sufficient) the written decisions of the four immigration judges referenced during the hearing. By 07/06/2018, the government shall upload its filing made in the Flores consent-decree case. The Court held a brief under-seal portion of the hearing with W.S.R., who was assisted by a Portuguese-English interpreter. The status hearing of 07/11/2018 remains in place.

  • Supplement to Motion Hearing (07/05/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Supplement to Reply to Response to Motion, Motion for Temporary Restraining Order, and Request for Emergency Hearing (07/06/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/06/2018)

In light of Plaintiff's supplement filed today, R. 33, the Court will alert the parties if a further hearing by telephone is deemed necessary. The Court notes that, on the current record, the government has not expressed any doubt on the father-son relationship asserted by C.D.A., nor has it offered any evidence that reunification would pose a danger to C.D.A.

  • Response by Plaintiff C.D.A. to Defendants’ Notice (07/11/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/11/2018)

Status hearing held. The government reported that it is committed to complying with the reunification order, which requires reunification by 1:48 p.m. on 07/12/2018. Government counsel also shall notify Plaintiffs' counsel, via e-mail, of the details of the transfer from ORR to ICE, the reunification location and, if applicable, the circumstances of the release, within 30 minutes of government counsel learning that information. A status hearing is set for 07/13/2018 at 10 a.m. But if the government filed, by 6 p.m. the evening of 07/12/2018, a status report that the reunification has occurred, then the status hearing will be reset for the week of 07/23 to discuss what remains of the litigation here.

  • Motion by Plaintiff C.D.A. For Protective Order Pursuant to F.R.C.P. 5.2(e)(1) (07/12/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/12/2018)

Plaintiffs' unopposed motion for protective order is granted. The Court will undertake a review on how to effectuate the redactions. 

  • Status Report (07/12/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Minute Entry (07/12/2018)

In light of the status report confirming that reunification occurred before the deadline, the status hearing of 07/13/2018 is reset to 07/25/2018 at 08:45 a.m. The parties shall confer on what they believe is the next step of the litigation and file a joint status report (with competing positions, if necessary) on 07/23/2018. 

​Padilla v. ICE (U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington)

Ramirez v. Sessions (U.S. District Court for the District of Colombia) 

  • Complaint Against All Defendants with Jury Demand (06/26/2018) (Access restricted)
  • Case Assigned to Judge Richard J. Leon (06/26/2018)
  • Case Reassigned (07/03/2018)

Case reassigned to Judge Paul L. Friedman as there is an earlier related case. Judge Richard J. Leon is no longer assigned to the case

State of Washington et al v. United States of America et al (U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington) 

Reassigning this matter to the Honorable Marsha J. Pechman because it is related to Case No. CV18-00928MJP. All pleadings filed in the future shall bear case number CV18-00939MJP.

The Government is order to resubmit all its briefing in proper font and page length. The responsive briefing in Defendants' Opposition to the Motion for Expedited Discovery and Regular Status Conferences shall be filed by 5:00 p.m., Thursday, July 12, 2016. The remaining pleadings must be re-formatted and refiled by Monday, July 16, 2018. 

  • Minute Order (07/12/2018)

Rescinding the Minute Order that Defendants resubmit their pleadings. Henceforth, all parties are required to submit their pleadings in 12 point Times New Roman font, and of course in conformity with all other formatting requirements of the Local Rules.

Gonzales-Garcia v. Sessions (U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts) 

Southwest Environmental Center v. Sessions et al (U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico) 

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that this case has been reassigned to Chief District Judge William P. Johnson as the trial judge.

  • Notice Regarding Document Entries (07/10/2018)

Because this case has been reassigned to a district judge, please be advised that any documents filed by the parties under Rule 73(b) have been permanently removed from the docket. Document(s) removed: No. 6. 

  • Case Reassigned (07/17/2018)

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that this case has been reassigned to Magistrate Judge Kevin R. Sweazea as the pretrial judge. Magistrate Judge Gregory B. Wormuth no longer assigned to this case.

 

 

Past litigation

R.I.L-R v. Johnson (U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia)

Documents Related to the Flores Settlement Agreement​

Flores v. Reno (U.S. District Court for the Central District of California)

Flores v. Lynch