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A big win for Amanda!

PB&L Attorney Amanda Gray wins  remand  at the Board of Immigration Appeals for a family of five seeking asylum from Michoacán, Mexico. Amanda’s client, a single, working class mother living in Michoacán, Mexico, and her four children became more vulnerable to the drug cartels and to the crime and violence plaguing the area after her husband died. The Immigration Judge found that Amanda’s client was just like any other woman in her small town because most of the men in her town would leave their families for 6-8 months at a time to work in the U.S.  Amanda argued that unlike the other women in the town, her client did not have any male protection or financial support. The BIA also found that even if the client’s group is broad, that is not a bar to a finding of “particularity” under the Ninth Circuit case, Perdomo v. Holder.  The Immigration Judge had also found that being a single woman in Michoacán, Mexico, was not an “immutable characteristic” because it is not impossible for her to change this status and she would not necessarily face significant harm if she were required to change her marital status.  Amanda argued that her client should not be required to get married just to avoid persecution. The BIA agreed and found that the Immigration Judge should have considered whether being unmarried was so fundamental to her identity that she should not be required to change just to avoid persecution. The BIA also found that the four children may have viable claims for asylum in their own right. This is a big win for Amanda’s clients. On remand to the Immigration Judge, they will have the opportunity to present additional arguments and evidence, including testimony.

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