Ada Merary Rivas-Ramos v Merrick Garland Court of Appeals Eighth Circuit (June 2 2023) [pdf]

“Ada Merary Rivas-Ramos v Merrick Garland”. NIWAP represented by Manatt, Phelps, and Phillips, LLP filed an
amicus brief in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in a case of Ada Rivas-Ramos faced abuse at the hands of her
former partner with whom she had been in a relationship with since she was 14 years old and shared children.
Rivas-Ramos testified as to the sustained abuse she suffered throughout their relationship, including that the abuser
hit her in the face with a bottle, threatened her and their children’s lives, and order men whom he sent after her to
sexually assault her. The brief, examined the social science research around intimate partner violence that explains
physically leaving a residence shared with an abusive partner does not mean the survivor has successfully ended the
relationship. This is particularly true where there are children in common, when there is economic abuse, and when
the abuser was coercively controlling the victim. The Board’s denial of her asylum rested on the premise she would
be able to leave the relationship again, which is inapposite to the research. The brief also explained many indicators present in both the case history and in peer-reviewed research that showed Rivas-Ramos was likely to face
increased violence or even death should she be forced to return to Honduras. Many risk factors – including stalking,
which has the highest indication of an abuser killing their victim – were present in Rivas-Ramos’ case. (June 2,