DOJ Amicus Brief in SD ICWA Class Action Case

The United States came in strongly on the side of the tribes and tribal families for both the enforcement of ICWA and meaningful due process.


Thus, from the very start of an emergency removal, Section 1922 requires state courts, agencies, and officials to actively investigate and evaluate whether the emergency situation has ended. Given the statutory requirements for oversight and “immediate” action, this ongoing obligation cannot be deferred for weeks or months until the next scheduled hearing occurs.


The interest that parents have in the custody of their children is not to be lightly interfered with, even following an emergency situation. While an emergency proceeding such as the 48- hour hearing may not permanently deprive parents of their custody rights, even a temporary deprivation of physical custody requires a prompt and meaningful hearing.

Memorandum in support of leave to file amicus here.

Motion for Leave to File here.

Update — The court granted the motion the next day:

123 DCT Order Granting US Motion

Previous coverage here.