Adil Abuzeid v. Alejandro Mayorkas

United States Court of Appeals FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT Argued January 27, 2023 Decided March 17, 2023 No. 21-5003 ADIL MOHAMED ABUZEID, M.D., AND MELISSA ANNE ABUZEID, APPELLANTS v. ALEJANDRO N. MAYORKAS, SECRETARY, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY, ET AL., APPELLEES Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (No. 1:18-cv-00382) Brian Schmitt argued the cause and filed the briefs for appellants. Cara E. Alsterberg, Trial Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, argued the cause for appellees. With her on the brief was Brian M. Boynton, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General. Before: PAN, Circuit Judge, and SENTELLE and TATEL, Senior Circuit Judges. 2 Opinion for the Court filed by Circuit Judge PAN. PAN, Circuit Judge: Dr. Adil Mohamed Abuzeid is a dual citizen of the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia, who entered the United States on a visa to receive graduate medical education. He sought to adjust his immigration status to that of a legal permanent resident under § 1255 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (the “INA”). The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) determined that he was ineligible for adjustment of status and denied his applications. Dr. Abuzeid and his wife, Melissa Anne Abuzeid, challenged that decision by filing suit under the Administrative Procedure Act (“APA”). The district court dismissed the case for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction under 8 U.S.C. § 1252(a)(2)(B)(i). We affirm. I. Background a. Legal Framework Section 1255 of the INA provides a way for noncitizens already admitted or paroled into the United States on a temporary basis to adjust their status to that of a legal permanent resident. See Meza v. Renaud, 9 F.4th 930, 932 (D.C. Cir. 2021) (discussing 8 U.S.C. § 1255). An applicant for adjustment of status must show that he meets three criteria: “(1) [he has made] an application for such adjustment, (2) [he] is eligible to receive an immigrant visa and is admissible to the United States for permanent residence, and (3) an immigrant visa is immediately available to him at the time his application is filed.” 8 U.S.C. § 1255(a). A J-1 visa is authorized for “exchange visitors” who come to the United States temporarily to participate in an approved program for teaching, studying, research, training, or other similar activities. 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(15)(J); 22 C.F.R. 3 § 41.62(a). A noncitizen who enters the United States on a J-1 visa to “receive graduate medical education or training” must commit to returning to the country of his nationality or last residence upon completion of the education or training. 8 U.S.C. § 1182(j)(1)(C). Such a visa holder is not “eligible to apply for an immigrant visa, or for permanent residence . . . until it is established that [he] has resided and been physically present in the country of his nationality or his last residence for an aggregate of at least two years” after completion of his educational or training program, subject to certain exceptions not at issue here. 8 U.S.C. § 1182(e). 1 …

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