The case involves a challenge to the DAPA (Deferred Action for Parental Accountability) and expanded DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) programs that President Obama announced last November. A group of states, led by Texas as the lead plaintiff, challenged these programs in federal district court before they could be implemented and contended that these programs exceeded the scope of the President’s authority under the U.S. Constitution and violated the Administrative Procedures Act (“APA”). The presiding federal district court judge, Andrew Hanen, agreed and enjoined the government from starting to process applications.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld the injunction.  

Supreme Court review is significant because these programs have been created by Executive Order and not legislation.  Their continued existence after the next President assumes office in January 2017 is far from assured.  The Supreme Court signaled its interest in a full consideration of the challenge several weeks ago, when it denied a request by the states to extend the briefing schedule.  

In the event the Supreme Court rules by mid-June and reverses the lower courts, the Department of Homeland Security would have around 7 months to implement the DAPA and expanded DAPA programs, run background checks, and to begin issuing temporary work permits to eligible individuals before the new President steps into office.   If the President’s programs are upheld, it would vastly expand the numbers of persons eligible for work authorization and Social Security Numbers.  Around 

Under the 2012 DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program, around 800,000 young people who entered the United States as children and met other guidelines, were granted temporary work permits and temporary relief from deportation.  Some states deemed them eligible for in-state tuition at universities and granted other benefits.