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Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Habeas Proceeding is Civil. Well, it should come as no surprise that a habeas proceeding is a civil action, but the question in Vacchio v. Ashcroft is whether its a civil action within the meaning of the Equal Access to Justice Act, which would allow the plaintiff to recover attorneys' fees. The proceeding at issue was "a petition for a writ of habeas corpus challenging an immigration detention." the Court found that it was a civil action under the Act and that the plaintiff was a prevailing party, but because the Government's position was substantially justified, and that the plaintiff was not entitled to fees. Judge Oakes issued a short dissent. The decision can be found here.

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