Gomez v. Biden (2020 Diversity Visas)

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), Justice Action Center (JAC), and Innovation Law Lab, with pro bono support from Mayer Brown LLP, filed this lawsuit in the summer of 2020 on behalf of family-based immigrant visa petitioners, diversity visa 2020 lottery winners, and non-immigrant employment-based visa sponsors, challenging President Trump’s April and June 2020 proclamations, which effectively stopped almost all immigration to the United States. On February 24, 2021, President Biden rescinded the ban on immigrant visas. On April 1, 2021, President Biden allowed the nonimmigrant visa ban to expire. Nevertheless, the proclamations continue to harm a class of 2020 diversity visa lottery winners, who were unable to receive visas in 2020 due to the proclamations’ ban on virtually all visa processing and issuance.

On October 13, Judge Mehta ordered the State Department to process 9,095 DV-2020 visas for members of the Gomez class by September 30, 2022. The judge ordered visa processing to commence “as soon as is feasible,” and directed that reserved visas must be “issued to eligible qualified immigrants strictly in a random order,” consistent with the immigration statute.

The government appealed Judge Mehta’s decision to the D.C. Circuit. As a result, Judge Mehta’s order is stayed until the D.C. Circuit reaches a decision on the appeal.

DV 2020 lottery winners may sign up for updates at this Innovation Law Lab page here.

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