Seventh Circuit Upholds End of Public Charge Rule
In 2019, former President Trump expanded the “public charge rule” that made it more difficult for immigrants to obtain the status of a permanent resident if they would receive public benefits, such as food stamps, housing assistance, and many forms of Medicaid. Several states challenged this expansion. In 2021, President Joe Biden officially ended that policy.
Later that year, a group of 14 states challenged the administration’s decision in a federal court in Illinois where it was denied. The 14 states included Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Texas, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, West Virginia, Montana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Ohio, South Carolina, and Oklahoma. This group of states appealed the denial to the Seventh Circuit court.
The Seventh Circuit sided with lower court and held that the states’ wish to intervene was untimely as the rule was abandoned by the Biden Administration. However, the decision allows the states to challenge the repeal of the rule under the Administration Procedure Act (APA). The states are free to start a new legal proceeding under the APA to challenge the repeal of the 2019 Public Charge rule.