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Multiple Court Cases Up Confusion, Anxiety For DACA Recipients

A new lawsuit to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program threatens to add to the list of conflicting decisions on the future of the program that shields some undocumented immigrants from deportation.

A Phoenix immigration lawyer says these competing court rulings can cause confusion and increase the anxiety felt by DACA recipients in Arizona.

Two federal judges have ordered the federal government to keep renewing DACA permits. A third judge recently ruled that the government will have to start accepting new DACA applications this summer, unless it proves why the program is illegal. Texas and a handful of other states just filed a lawsuit to force the total end of DACA.

“I think the effect really is going to be people being afraid to renew their DACA, when they see another lawsuit being filed,” said immigration attorney Ray Ybarra Maldonado.

If the Texas case leads to a ruling against the DACA program, Ybarra Maldonado said it is unlikely to affect Arizona. All signs point to the U.S. Supreme Court having the final say on the whether DACA program continues.

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Matthew Casey has won Edward R. Murrow awards for hard news and sports reporting since he joined KJZZ as a senior field correspondent in 2015.