Declaratory Judgment


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A Declaratory Judgment action under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) allows international professionals and U.S. companies to seek judicial review in federal court to challenge erroneous denials by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The APA outlines the procedure for such challenges, providing a legal avenue for individuals who believe that a DHS decision was arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law. Through a Declaratory Judgment action, individuals can request the court to declare the rights and legal relations at issue, effectively seeking a determination that the DHS’s denial was incorrect. This legal process serves as a means to rectify perceived injustices and ensure that government decisions comply with the law, promoting accountability and fairness in immigration matters.

A final appealable decision is required. Alternatively, USCIS provides an option for an internal administrative appeal through a Motion to Reopen or Reconsider, which often takes around a year and results in USCIS affirming their decision. The filing of this type of appeal results in the decision not being final and can often take longer than resolving in federal court.

The above is informational and not intended to be legal advice. Please consult with an experienced business immigration attorney on your specific facts and circumstances before proceeding with any U.S. immigration strategy.