Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia serves as the Samuel Weiss Faculty Scholar at Pennsylvania
State University’s Dickinson School of Law. She is a nationally recognized expert on the
intersection of immigration law and prosecutorial discretion whose scholarly work has
served as a foundation for scholars, advocates and government officials seeking to
understand or design a strong prosecutorial discretion policy. Her work identifies the
historical role of prosecutorial discretion in immigration law, the extent to which some
acts of discretion operate as a benefit and the dynamic role and need for transparency,
sound procedures, and accountability. Wadhia's book, Beyond Deportation: The Role of
Prosecutorial Discretion in Immigration Cases will be published by New York University
Press in 2015 and is the first on the topic. Wadhia is the founder and director of the
Center for Immigrants' Rights clinic at Penn State Law, where students work on
policy projects of national importance and represent individuals facing removal
(deportation). She also teaches immigration law and asylum and refugee law. 

FOIAs with USCIS on Prosecutorial Discretion


Standard Operating Procedure for Deferred Action (non-DACA) (2015)

In January 2015, I filed a FOIA request seeking updated internal policies and correspondence regarding...



Standard Operating Procedure: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) (2013)

In Fall 2012 I filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request with DHS seeking...



FOIA Response Deferred Action Policy at USCIS (2013)

I filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request with USCIS seeking internal documents and...


FOIAS with CBP and ICE on Prosecutorial Discretion


FOIA Response from ICE on Parole (2015)

In Fall 2014 I filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request with ICE seeking...



FOIA Response from CBP on Notices to Appear (2013)

Following a FOIA to CBP for research on a forthcoming report by Penn State Law’s...


Scholarly Articles on Prosecutorial Discretion


Demystifying Employment Authorization and Prosecutorial Discretion in Immigration Cases (2015)

On November 20, 2014, President Barack Obama announced a series of immigration programs aimed to...



The History of Prosecutorial Discretion in Immigration Law, American University Law Review (2015)

This Article describes the historical role of prosecutorial discretion in immigration law and connects this...



The Rise of Speed Deportation and the Role of Discretion, Columbia Journal of Race and Law (2014)

In 2013, the majority of people deported never saw a courtroom or immigration judge. Instead,...



My Great FOIA Adventure and Discoveries of Deferred Action Cases at ICE, Georgetown Immigration Law Journal (2013)

This Article describes my adventures in FOIA litigation and analyzes deferred action data collected informally...


Other Scholarly Articles


Immigration Law's Catch-22: The Case for Removing the Three and Ten-Year Bars, Bender's Immigration Bulletin (2014)

Congress has made family immigration a priority in statute but the unlawful-presence bars, also known...



Use of the Term 'Illegal Alien', Debates on Immigration (2012)

This essay examines the use of the terms “alien,” “illegal,” and “illegal alien.” It will...



Business as Usual Immigration and the National Security Exception, Penn State Law Review (2010)

Javaid Iqbal is a native and citizen of Pakistan and a Muslim. After moving to...



Under Arrest: Immigrants' Rights and the Rule of Law, University of Memphis Law Review, Vol. 38, No. 853 (2008)

The discussion is broken down into four parts. First, I will review some basic historical...



The Policy and Politics of Immigrant Rights, Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review, Vol. 16, No. 387 (2007)

This article examines how immigration policies over the past decade have affected immigrant rights, scrutinizes...


Policy Documents