A federal judge has issued a decision Friday that blocks new DACA applications, after Texas and several other states filed a lawsuit against the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen sided with the states in his ruling, agreeing that then-President Barack Obama had overstepped his executive authority when he created the program in 2012.
The lawsuit had sought an “orderly wind-down” of the program, and argued DACA was unlawful and burdened states with additional health care, education, and law enforcement costs.
Judge Hanen said DACA is an “illegally implemented program” and “whose existence violates the law.”
However, the judge acknowledged that hundreds of thousands of young immigrants need the program to work legally in the U.S. and avoid deportation.
The judge said he would not take the program away from those using it, while the Biden administration attempts to correct it, according to the Washington Post.
“Hundreds of thousands of individual DACA recipients, along with their employers, states, and loved ones, have come to rely on the DACA program,” Hanen wrote. “Given those interests, it is not equitable for a government program that has engendered such a significant reliance to terminate suddenly. This consideration, along with the government’s assertion that it is ready and willing to try to remedy the legal defects of the DACA program, indicates that equity will not be served by a complete and immediate cessation of DACA.”
The judge issued a permanent injunction and sent the issue to the Department of Homeland Security for reconsideration.
In December, a federal judge ruled that Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf was not legally serving in his role when he signed rules that placed limitations on incoming applications and renewals. He ordered the Trump administration to begin accepting new applications within three days of the ruling.