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June 19, 2015

Kerry v Din - Supreme Court Decision

Din petitioned to have her husband, Berashk, a resident citizen of Afghanistan and former civil servant in the Taliban regime, classified as an “immediate relative” entitled to priority immigration status. Din’s petition was approved, but Berashk’s visa application was ultimately denied. A consular officer informed Berashk that he was inadmissible under 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(3)(B), which excludes aliens who have engaged in “[t]errorist activities,” but provided no further information. Unable to obtain a more detailed explanation, Din filed suit. The district court dismissed her complaint. The Ninth Circuit reversed, holding that Din had a protected liberty interest in her marriage that entitled her to review of the denial of Berashk’s visa and that the government deprived her of that liberty interest without due process when it denied Berashk’s visa application without providing a more detailed explanation of its reasons. The Supreme Court vacated and remanded, with Justices Roberts, Scalia, and Thomas concluding that the government did not deprive Din of any constitutional right entitling her to due process of law. Justices Kennedy and Alito found no need to decide whether Din had a protected liberty interest, because, even assuming she did, the notice she received satisfied due process. 

Date of this Opinion: June 15, 2015