Luna-Garcia v. Barr, No. 16-60847 (5th Cir. 2019)Annotate this Case
The Fifth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's order dismissing petitioner's appeal of the denial of her motion to reopen. The court rejected petitioner's contention that she was entitled to reopen the in absentia removal order because she never received notice despite having satisfied her statutory obligation to provide an address to receive notice.
The court held that 8 U.S.C. 1229(a)(1)(F)(i)—like its predecessor, 8 U.S.C. 1252b(a)(1)(F)(i)—requires an alien who is physically in the United States and subject to removal from the United States to provide a United States address to receive notice by mail. Applying this interpretation of section 1229(a)(1)(F)(i), the court held that the BIA did not abuse its discretion in dismissing the appeal and in rejecting the argument that a Guatemalan address was sufficient. Even assuming arguendo that an alien may satisfy her obligation to provide an address under section 1229(a)(1)(F)(i) by providing a foreign address, petitioner could not prevail because there was no realistic possibility that, absent the errors, the BIA would have reached another outcome than to dismiss the appeal.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on July 23, 2019.