Skip to main content

AG decides Matter of L-E-A-, narrowing family-based PSGs

  1. Date Announced

    July 29, 2019

    Under Matter of L-E-A-, most nuclear families are not inherently socially distinct and therefore do not qualify as “particular social groups.” Adjudicators analyzing asylum claims based on membership in a family unit must consider whether that specific family is “set apart, or distinct, from other persons within the society in some significant way.”

    [ID #86]

    See Biden administration action below.

    View Policy Document
  2. Effective Date of Change

    July 29, 2019
  3. Subsequent Action

    Litigation filed in D.D.C. court 11/25/19, S.A.P v. Barr, Case No. 1:19-cv-03549

  4. Biden Administration Action

    June 16, 2021

    This Biden administration action revokes in its entirety the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.

    On June 16, 2021, Attorney General Garland issued a new decision in Matter of L-E-A-, vacating Matter of L-E-A-, 27 I&N Dec. 581 (A.G. 2019) (L-E-A- II) in its entirety. The decision instructs immigration judges to revert to the "preexisting state of affairs" before L-E-A- II was issued, pending a forthcoming final rule on "particular social group."

    2021.06.16 Matter of L-E-A- 28 I&N Dec. 304 (A.G.2021)
  5. Biden Administration Action

    June 16, 2021

    This Biden administration action revokes in its entirety the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.

    On June 16, 2021, Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta explained that "Attorney General Garland's decisions instruct that Immigration Judges and the Board of Immigration Appeals should no longer follow the vacated decisions [Matters of L-E-A-, A-B- I, and A-B- II] and should instead revert to prior precedent."

    2021.06.16 Impact of Attorney General decisions in Matter of L-E-A- and Matter of A-B-
Type of Action: Adjudication
Subject Matter: Asylum, Withholding and CAT
Agencies Affected: EOIR ICE AG USCIS

Prior Policies

Subsequent Action

Biden Administration Actions

Other Documents

  1. Associated or Derivative Policies

We require registration to leave feedback. You may either:

  • Sign in with your current user name and password.

  • Register if you don't have a user name and password.