Resources on Acquisition and Derivation

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U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services issued new guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual on April 18, 2018, that relates to the determination of acquisition of citizenship at birth for children born abroad out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen mother or father. This new guidance implements the June 12, 2017, Supreme Court decision in Sessions v. Morales-Santana, 137 S.Ct. 1678 (2017) where the Court determined that it is unconstitutional to have a more favorable physical presence requirement for U.S. citizen mothers of children born out of wedlock than for U.S.

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The nuances of U.S. citizenship were front and center in a pair of important recent legal decisions. The Board of Immigration Appeals, or BIA, issued a ruling involving cancellation of a citizenship of certificate. The U.S. Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, struck down the law that treated certain citizen mothers and fathers differently with respect to the ability to confer citizenship on children born outside the United States.

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