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CT:UNITED STATES V. MENASCHE, 348 U. S. 528 (1955)

U.S. Supreme Court

ct:United States v. Menasche, 348 U.S. 528 (1955)

United States v. Menasche

No. 104

Argued March 1, 1955

Decided April 4, 1955

348 U.S. 528


An alien who filed his declaration of intention to become an American citizen before the effective date of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, and who otherwise complied with the naturalization laws then in effect, has a "status," "condition," or "right in process of acquisition" preserved by § 405(a), the general savings clause of the 1952 Act, even though his petition for naturalization was filed after the effective date of that Act. Pp. 348 U. S. 529-539.

(a) When subsection (a) of the savings clause was broadened in the 1952 Act, Congress manifested its intention that the Act should take effect prospectively where there was no specific provision to the contrary. Pp. 348 U. S. 533-535.

(b) The 1952 extension of subsection (a) is not limited to situations concerning derivative citizenship. P. 348 U. S. 535.

(c) The fact that, under the 1952 Act, declarations of intention are no longer prerequisite to naturalization is immaterial here, in view of the provision in § 405(a) preserving the "validity" of declarations of intention "valid at the time this Act shall take effect." Pp. 348 U. S. 535-536.

(d) In this case, the alien's inchoate right to citizenship is protected by § 405(a), and is not defeated by any implication stemming from § 405(b). Pp. 348 U. S. 536536-539.

(e) Section 316(a) of the 1952 Act, which imposes a more stringent requirement as to residence than did the prior law, did not "otherwise specifically provide" that the 1952 Act, rather than the prior law, was to apply to the situation of the alien in this case. P. 348 U. S. 539.

10 F.2d 809 affirmed.

Page 348 U. S. 529

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