August 29, 2023

Schlam Stone & Dolan obtained a major victory in CoreCivic v. Murphy, 23-cv-967 (D.N.J. Aug. 29, 2023), in which district judge Robert Kirsch barred enforcement of a New Jersey law (AB-5207) that precludes private entities from contracting with the federal government to house civil immigration detainees.

CoreCivic, a national leader in corrections and detention management, has long operated the Elizabeth Detention Center (the “EDC”), the only facility currently available in New Jersey for civil immigrant detention.  CoreCivic sought a preliminary injunction allowing it to enter a new contact with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) for the EDC upon the current contract’s expiration.  Judge Kirsch converted the application for a preliminary injunction to a final disposition on the merits and granted judgment to CoreCivic on its claims that enforcement of AB-5207 to prevent CoreCivic from contracting with ICE to operate the EDC would be contrary to principles of intergovernmental immunity (which prohibit state or local governments from directly regulating federal operations), and that AB-5207 is preempted by federal immigration law because it interferes with the manner in which ICE discharges its congressionally-assigned functions. 

The decision allows CoreCivic to enter into a contract to continue operating the EDC after the current contract’s August 31, 2023 expiration.

Schlam Stone & Dolan lawyers Bradley Simon, Thomas Kissane and David Goldsmith represented CoreCivic.  

Read the full decision here.