Client Alerts

Divided Supreme Court Rules Some Immigrants Not Entitled to Bond Hearings

By: David W. Leopold

About: Immigration

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court held that some immigrants do not have a right to a bond hearing, even when they were not immediately detained years after being released from criminal custody. The Court’s decision reverses the decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Nielsen v. Preap.

In the 5-4 ruling, the justices found that the Ninth Circuit used an interpretation of the mandatory detention statute that contradicted its text and structure. The statute provides that noncitizens who have criminal records can be detained without having a bond hearing during the time their removal proceedings are resolved.

The suit, which dates back to 2013, was brought when three immigrants challenged their detentions without bond. A lower court granted the immigrants’ motion for class certification and then issued an injunction that required the government to hold bond hearings for all the class members.

Said David Leopold, Chair of Ulmer’s Immigration Law Group, “With this ruling the U.S. Supreme Court has endorsed the mass lock-up of certain immigrants, without the opportunity to apply for reasonable bail, even if they have lawful immigration status and even if they were released from immigration detention years ago. The ruling is a step backward for due process and fairness.”

Ulmer’s Immigration Law Group keeps a close eye on breaking immigration news from the U.S. Supreme Court. Please reach out to our team if you have any questions about this new ruling.