The U.S. Supreme Court held, on Thursday, the way immigration law currently is written, whether an alien is eligible to be spared deportation depends on if authorities gave him a single document with certain information starting the deportation process, versus spreading that information across multiple documents.
According to U.S. immigration law, “resident aliens” ordered removed from the country can legally remain by establishing continued residence for at least ten years. This case turned on the question: at what point does the clock stop, so to speak, on the period of residence?
The stop-time rule was established by congressional statute in 2004. This rule provides that the period of continuous presence “shall be deemed to end when the alien is served a notice to appear” in a removal proceeding.
The Supreme Court delivered a 6-3 decision in this case. Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote the opinion of the Court, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Stephen Breyer,