Invitation to Join Amicus Brief

The Presidents’ Alliance invites all Presidents’ Alliance member institutions and TheDream.US partner colleges to join an amicus brief in support of MALDEF’s appeal in Texas v. United States, the 5th Circuit case involving the legality of DACA. Amicus briefs are due on February 1, 2024. To join in support of this brief, you must sign up by 5 pm ET on January 29, 2024.

For a overview of the amicus brief, see this memo, Context and Purpose of the Amicus Brief in Defense of DACA Recipients.

Read the draft amicus brief here

Why join the amicus brief?

  • Your individual institution matters.  It can be very meaningful on a campus level for students, employees,  alumni, and other community members to know their institution has signed onto an amicus brief as a sign of its support for them. 
  • We will be working with partners, including TheDream.US to provide you with prepared sample press releases, social media, messages to campus and more which you will be able to use upon the submission of the amicus brief. 
  • Bringing together a large, diverse group of institutions from across the country is a powerful signal of the breadth and depth of higher education’s concern for our students and alumni. 
  • The challenge to the legality of DACA impacts public and private colleges and universities in every state, and all institutional types.  Joining the brief underscores that point.
  • Hearing the transformational impact of DACA for students, employees, and alumni from different institutions, their reliance on DACA, and the significant economic and workforce impacts of ending DACA, is vital evidence for the case. 

Sign-Up Form:

Deadline: 5 pm ET on January 29, 2024

See list of current signatories (as of January, 25, 2024) here

Outline of the Argument:  The amicus brief will explain how recent data shows how DACA has enabled Dreamers to graduate from college and become a vital and positive force in the U.S. economy.  College-educated dreamers match or outperform their peers on key metrics and are making significant contributions to the most important sectors of our economy.  These DACA recipients epitomize the American Dream, achieving social mobility and often supporting their families.  DACA’s end would be a blow to all of the Presidents’ Alliance’s members–from large public schools to private institutions to community colleges–and their work to help these young individuals, who have lived practically their whole lives in this country, to support their families and contribute to the U.S. economy and U.S. society as a whole.

The amicus brief drafting is being led by David Zimmer of Goodwin Procter. David Zimmer is a partner in the Supreme Court and Appellate practice at Goodwin Procter in Boston. His practice focuses on U.S. Supreme Court and appellate matters, as well as complex commercial litigation in a wide range of areas. He has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court and has handled cases before numerous federal and state appellate and trial courts. David maintains an active pro bono practice, primarily centered around immigration issues. He successfully argued two of the most significant immigration cases in recent years in the Supreme Court: Pereira v. Sessions and Niz-Chaves v. Garland, which greatly expanded access to cancellation of removal. 

Fee and Eligibility to Join. There is no fee for Presidents’ Alliance Member institutions, TheDream.US partner colleges, or partner associations and organizations. We expect that all members that join will  plan to make a FY24 membership contribution and that some may have already done so. If your president or chancellor is not yet a Presidents’ Alliance Member, they may join the Alliance, making the institution eligible to join the brief.

Conflicts Checks and Listing in the Brief: The Presidents’ Alliance and the Goodwin Procter team are working on a tight schedule to produce the amicus brief, with submission of the amicus brief due on February 1, 2024.  To accommodate this quick turn-around, the Presidents’ Alliance will technically serve as the amicus party. That is, the brief will formally be filed by the Presidents’ Alliance.  However, the brief will specifically identify—in prominent fashion—institutions that sign up through this form. There will be an introductory phrase that notes the role of the Presidents’ Alliance and TheDream.US.  For the avoidance of all doubt, unless a Presidents’ Alliance member reaches a specific agreement with Goodwin Procter, an institution listed on the brief as a member of the Presidents’ Alliance or as one of the partner colleges of TheDream.US does not establish any attorney-client relationship between Goodwin Procter and the institution.

To opt out of the amicus brief after signing up: Institutions may email their notice to opt out to by 12 pm ET, January 29, 2024.

Submission of this brief or a version of this brief in support of future legal challenges:  This brief or a version of this brief may also be submitted in support of future legal challenges.  The Presidents’ Alliance will keep the signatories updated on future versions of the brief, future deadlines and future opt-out dates.

Background on the Fifth Circuit case: On September 13, 2023, U.S. District Judge Hanen found that the Biden Administration rule issued in 2022 that formalized DACA was unlawful, and on November 9, 2023, the Administration and MALDEF filed appeals in the case. Also see our January 22, 2024 briefing, DACA and the 5th Circuit: What’s at Stake and Why Join Our Amicus Brief, featuring Thomas A. Saenz, President and General Counsel of MALDEF, David Zimmer, Partner at Goodwin Procter, Patricia McGuire, President of Trinity Washington University & TheDream.US Partner Institution, Gaby Pacheco, President and CEO of TheDream.US, and Irvin Rendon, DREAM Center Supervisor at CSU-Northridge.