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Huang v. Nielsen

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

June 6, 2018

YOU ZENG HUANG, Plaintiff,
v.
KIRSTJEN NIELSEN, Secretary, Department of Homeland Security, and LEE CISSNA, Director, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services, Defendants.

          RULING AND ORDER ON MOTION TO DISMISS

          VICTOR A. BOLDEN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         You Zeng Huang (“Plaintiff”) moved for a writ of mandamus to compel a decision on an I-485 adjustment of status application and an I-730 Refugee Asylee Relative Petition (collectively “immigration applications”) from Jeh Johnson, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, and Leon Rodriguez, Director of the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (“Defendants”).[1]

         Defendants now move to dismiss the Complaint as moot. See Def. Mot., ECF No. 8. For the reasons that follow, the motion is GRANTED.

         I. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         You Zeng Huang is a citizen of the People's Republic of China. Compl. ¶ 5, ECF No. 1. Defendants are government officials with the United States Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) and are sued in their official capacities. Compl. ¶ 6-7. Both Defendants are responsible for administering the Immigration and Nationality Act. Id.

         A. Factual Allegations

         Mr. Huang came to the United States from the People's Republic of China seeking asylum, which was granted on September 16, 2010. Compl. ¶ 9. Subsequently, based on his asylee status, Mr. Huang filed an I-730 petition for his wife, Xiu Bing Liang, on November 02, 2010, and an I-485 adjustment of status application for himself on September 30, 2011. Id. ¶¶ 10-11. At the time of the Complaint, Huang had allegedly not received any updates on his immigration applications since October 2011, despite allegedly making repeated inquiries. Id. ¶¶ 12-13.

         B. Procedural Background

         On September 29, 2016, Mr. Huang filed a mandamus action with the Court under 28 U.S.C. § 1361 (“Mandamus Act”). See generally Compl. Mr. Huang sought an order compelling adjudication of the two applications for immigration relief. Compl. at 4, ¶ IV. On September 30, 2016, in accordance with Fed.R.Civ.P. 4, Defendants were issued summons by the Court. ECF No. 4.

         On March 15, 2017, DHS maintains it interviewed Mr. Huang concerning his asylum status and Complaint. Def. Mot. at 1. After the interview, Mr. Huang's immigration applications were forwarded to the Texas Service Center for U.S. Citizenship & Immigration (“Texas Service Center”) for adjudication. Id. On July 25, 2017, the Texas Service Center requested additional evidence from Mr. Huang in order to adjudicate the I-485 application. Id. at 2. Mr. Huang responded to this request with the additional information and, on July 27, 2017, Mr. Huang's I-730 petition was granted. See Notice of Action on I-730 Refugee Asylee Relative Petition, ECF No. 8-1. On August 28, 2017, Mr. Huang's I-485 application was granted. See Notice of Action on I485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, ECF No. 8-2.

         On August 17, 2017, Defendants moved to dismiss Mr. Huang's Complaint. Mot. to Dismiss at 1, ECF No. 8. Defendants argue that the relief request has been granted and the lawsuit is now moot. Id. In their motion, Defendants included copies of the Notices of Action providing the relief sought by Mr. Huang. See Notice of Action on I-730 Refugee Asylee Relative Petition; Notice of Action on I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, ECF No. 8-2. Mr. Huang has not opposed this motion.

         II. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         “Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction[.]” Gunn v. Minton, 568 U.S. 251, 256 (2013). If a federal court does not have subject-matter jurisdiction, the lawsuit must be dismissed. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(h)(3). A court lacks subject-matter jurisdiction “when the district court lacks the statutory or constitutional authority to adjudicate it.” Makarova v. United States, 201 F.3d 110, 113 (2d Cir. 2000). Federal courts are only permitted to adjudicate actual cases or controversies. See U.S. Const. Art. III, § 2. In determining whether a case or controversy exists, the court will view all uncontroverted facts as true and “draw all reasonable inferences in favor of the party asserting jurisdiction.” Tandon v. Captain's Cove Marina of Bridgeport, Inc., 752 F.3d 239, 243 (2d Cir. 2014).

         III. ...


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