Rajasekaran et al v. Hazuda et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER granting 13 Motion for TRO. Plaintiff's 13 Motion for Preliminary Injunction will be considered at a later date. Plaintiffs' counsel shall make necessary arrangements with Defendants' counsel to contact my judicial assistant, by telephone at (402) 437-1640, to schedule a conference call between counsel for the parties and myself to discuss scheduling a hearing on the motion. Ordered by Senior Judge Richard G. Kopf. (ADB)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEBRASKA
and MUGHIL SRIRAMVENUGOPAL,
MARK HAZUDA, Director, Nebraska
Service Center, U.S. Citizenship and
Immigration Services, ALEJANDRO
MAYORKAS, Director, U.S. Citizenship
and Immigration Services, ERIC HOLDER
JR., Attorney General of the United States,
and RAND BEERS, Acting Secretary
Department of Homeland Security,
Plaintiffs have filed a motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary
injunction “to toll the accrual of any unlawful presence as of the date of filing the
Complaint in the present case” and “order[ing] that USCIS consider Plaintiffs’
adjustment of status applications pending during the pendency of the current lawsuit”
(filing 13). This filing follows the USCIS Administrative Appeals Office’s rejection
of Plaintiffs’ administrative appeals. See status report (filing 12).
In Dataphase Systems, Inc. v. C L Systems, Inc., 640 F.2d 109, 114 (8th Cir.
1981) (en banc), the Court of Appeals clarified the standard district courts should
apply when considering a motion for preliminary injunctive relief:
(1) the threat of irreparable harm to the movant; (2) the state of balance
between this harm and the injury that granting the injunction will inflict
on other parties litigant; (3) the probability that movant will succeed on
the merits; and (4) the public interest.
“The party seeking injunctive relief bears the burden of proving these factors.”
Lankford v. Sherman, 451 F.3d 496, 503 (8th Cir. 2006). “No single factor in itself is
dispositive; rather, each factor must be considered to determine whether the balance
of equities weighs toward granting the injunction.” United Indus. Corp. v. Clorox Co.,
140 F.3d 1175, 1179 (8th Cir.1998). “At base, the question is whether the balance of
equities so favors the movant that justice requires the court to intervene to preserve
the status quo until the merits are determined . . ..” Dataphase, 640 F.2d at 113.
I believe the Dataphase case should be applied to temporary restraining order
situations. That said, and emphasizing that my mind may be changed by a better
developed record and briefing, I find and conclude that the Dataphase factors favor
Plaintiffs because they have a fair probability of success on the merits and are liable
to suffer irreparable harm if nothing is done (such as being barred from readmission
to the United States in the future and being unable to work or to obtain driver’s
licenses while this case is pending), whereas Defendants will suffer no hardship and
there is no obvious public interest in denying Plaintiffs the temporary relief requested.
IT IS ORDERED:
Plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary restraining order (filing 13, part 1) is
granted, as follows:
From the date of commencement of this action, and until such time as the
court rules on Plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction or until
further order of the court, the accrual of any “unlawful presence” time
against Plaintiffs is tolled, and Defendants shall treat Plaintiffs’
applications for adjustment of status as if they were still pending. No
security shall be required.
Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction (filing 13, part 2) will be
considered at a later date. Plaintiffs’ counsel shall make necessary
arrangements with Defendants’ counsel to contact my judicial assistant,
Kris Leininger, by telephone at (402) 437-1640, to schedule a conference
call between counsel for the parties and myself to discuss scheduling a
hearing on the motion. During the scheduling conference counsel should
be prepared to discuss, among other things, whether the trial on the
merits (i.e., the court’s determination of cross-motions for summary
judgment, based on a review of the certified administrative record)
should be consolidated with the preliminary injunction hearing pursuant
to Fed. R. Civ. P. 65(a)(2).
DATED this 27th day of March, 2014.
BY THE COURT:
Richard G. Kopf
Senior United States District Judge
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