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What are SCOTUS' options regarding the travel ban?

In our last post, we discussed how the Department of Justice, on the heels of a recent defeat in U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, has filed a petition for a writ of certiorari with the Supreme Court of the United States. Specifically, how it is now seeking a definitive determination from the nation's high court as to the constitutionality of the Trump Administration's travel ban.

We also discussed how the timing of the move could present certain procedural complications given that SCOTUS has only a few weeks remaining it its current session, and the process of bringing a case before it typically takes months.  

Interestingly, experts have been weighing in on some of the actions that SCOTUS could take potentially take concerning the travel ban case in the weeks -- or even days -- ahead.

Provide limited injunctive relief

The broad injunction issued by a federal district court judge in Hawaii not only stopped the 90-day entry and the 120-day refugee entry travel bans, but also efforts to develop more stringent, permanent vetting procedures based on the results of these temporary bans.

Experts indicate that five justices could decide to stay this portion of the injunction, such that the Trump administration could proceed with efforts to develop these permanent policies while the travel ban itself would become moot. They also concede that the matter would still end up before the high court, albeit under different legal theories.

Provide total injunctive relief   

The five justices could theoretically stay both of injunctions, meaning both travel bans could proceed until the matter is resolved. However, to do so would require a finding that the DOJ would more than likely prevail. This outcome, say experts, is highly unlikely.

Grant the petition for cert without injunctive relief

On the other end of the spectrum, experts indicate this is the most likely outcome. Indeed, only four justices would need to agree to grant a writ of certiorari, and the case would essentially be shelved until the fall and a decision handed down in 2018.

Deny the petition for cert  

Experts suggest the possibility of SCOTUS declining any review of the case is unlikely given its controversial nature.

Stay tuned for updates …

Consider speaking with an experienced legal professional who can answer your questions and pursue solutions if you have questions or concerns relating to U.S. immigration law.

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