Allen v. Milas, No. 16-15728 (9th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
The Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court's dismissal of an action brought by plaintiff under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), challenging the U.S. Consulate's denial of his visa application filed on behalf of his wife, who is a native and citizen of Germany. Determining that the district court had subject matter jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. 1331 and that the doctrine of consular nonreviewability did not strip the district court of that jurisdiction, the panel held that the APA provides no avenue for review of a consular officer's adjudication of a visa on the
merits. The panel explained that, rather, the only standard by which it could review the merits of a consular officer's denial of a visa was for constitutional error, where the visa application was denied without a facially legitimate and bona fide reason. In this case, the consular officer's citations to the Immigration and Nationality Act and identification of the wife's criminal history constituted facially legitimate and bona fide reasons for rejecting her visa application. Accordingly, the panel affirmed the district court's denial of the petition for writ of mandamus.