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Abstract

Despite being married to a U.S. citizen, non-citizen transgender individuals and non-citizen spouses married to transgender U.S. citizens still face deportation today due to current immigration policies. When forced to return to their home countries, transgender individuals are likely to encounter violence from those who perpetuate hate towards transgender and gender non-conforming individuals. Instead of protecting these individuals, the United States continues to send people back to their native countries solely because those individuals do not fall within the narrowly constructed definition of marriage some states use that is legally recognized by federal courts. Transgender individuals receive disparate treatment as a direct result of This Comment argues that such inconsistent treatment is unfair and, more importantly, unconstitutional. This Comment also evaluates the inequities and inconsistencies that stem from the In re Lovo-Lara decision, the equal protections afforded by the U.S. Constitution, and the recent court of appeals trend that has deemed the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional altogether.