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Legal Citations for ILW.COM's Seminar
""I Like To Be An American!": Current Issues In U.S.
Naturalization And Nationality Law "
Part 3 held on September 10, 2003

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From Edward Betancourt

From Mark Mancini

  • Sourino v. U.S., 86 F.2d 309 (5th Cir. 1936)
  • Schneiderman v. US 320 US 118 (1943)
  • Chaunt v. U.S., 364 U.S. 350 (1960)
  • Fedorenko v. INS, 449 U.S. 490 (1981)
  • U.S. v. Demjanjuk, 518 F.Supp. 1362 (1981)
  • GMC and Kungys v. US 485 U.S. 759 (1988)
  • Gorbach v. Reno, 219 F.3d 1087 (9th Cir. 1990)

From Angelo Paparelli

  • INA § 101(a)(21) defines the term "national" as a "person owing permanent allegiance to a state". INS interprets the definition of the term "owing permanent allegiance to a state" by reference to the citizenship retention laws of the alien's place of birth (or subsequently acquired citizenship).
  • Citizenship Laws of the World -- U.S. Office of Personnel Management: March, 2001
    • Under the common law regime of perpetual allegiance : no man may abjure his country,
    • the individual lacked the legal capacity to forsake his sovereign.
    • As Blackstone characterized it, obligations to one's sovereign represented "a debt of gratitude[,] which cannot be forfeited, canceled, or altered, by any change of time, place, or circumstance." No right of expatriation was recognized in a system of nationality premised on perpetual allegiance
  • Cf. the oath of renunciation: INA § 337 (8 U.S.C. § 1448(a)(2)) Naturalization applicant must "renounce and abjure absolutely and entirely all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which the applicant was before a subject or citizen."
  • Matter of Ognibene, 18 I&N Dec. 425 (R.C. 1983), determined, however, that "the nationality claimed or established …at the time of [an alien's] entry into the United States must be regarded, for purposes of section 214 of the Act, as his sole or operative nationality for the duration of his temporary stay in the United States."
  • Matter of Damioli, 17 I. & N. Dec. 303 (BIA 1980), another E-2 case The applicant's employer was a dual national of U.S. and Italy, who ran a shipping business based on claim that she was a U.S. citizen. E-2 applicant contended that the United States should give equal recognition to his employer's Italian citizenship in order that he may receive treaty investor status as her employee under 22 C. F.R. 41.41(3). To do so would allow a situation in which she would be able to secure benefits from one Government agency by claiming to be a United States citizen, and simultaneously secure other benefits from a second Government agency by claiming to be an Italian citizen. The owner's dual nationalities, however, are not interchangeable at will depending upon the relative Government benefits she may be granted or denied by claiming one or the other. As indicated above one of the two nationalities must predominate. Here the affirmative actions of the owner herself establish the predominance of her United States citizenship.
  • Consider also decision of Iran - United States Claims tribunal where U.S. government asserted that the rule of international law recognizes that the "dominant and effective nationality" -- a facts and circumstances test - will determine the individual's nationality.
  • Difficult to reconcile the holdings in Ognibene, Damioli and Iran - United States Claims tribunal decision the with the Service's claim that the citizenship retention laws of the individual's place of birth determine a nonimmigrant's nationality for purposes of special registration.
  • Dual Nationality And The Meaning Of Citizenship Peter J. Spiro