Fitting Punishment

59 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2009 Last revised: 30 Mar 2010

See all articles by Juliet P. Stumpf

Juliet P. Stumpf

Lewis & Clark College - Lewis & Clark Law School; University of Oxford - Border Criminologies; Lewis & Clark College Paul L Boley Library

Date Written: 2009


Proportionality is conspicuously absent from the legal framework for immigration sanctions. Immigration law relies on one sanction - deportation - as the ubiquitous penalty for any immigration violation. Neither the gravity of the violation nor the harm that results bears on whether deportation is the consequence for an immigration violation. Immigration law stands alone in the legal landscape in this respect. Criminal law incorporates proportionality when imposing graduated punishment based on the gravity of the offense; contract and tort law provide for damages that are graduated based on the harm to others or to society.

This Article represents the first and fundamental step in a larger project of articulating a proposed remedial scheme that would align immigration law with the broader landscape of legal sanctions. It traces the history of immigration sanctions, offering a historical perspective on the recent arrival of deportation as the central immigration sanction. The Article takes a fresh approach to remedying violations of immigration law, proposing a system of graduated sanctions that would align immigration remedies with the overarching goals of U.S. immigration law.

Keywords: immigration, proportionality, penology, criminal, deportation, penalty, punishment, sanction, remedy, crimmigration

Suggested Citation

Stumpf, Juliet P., Fitting Punishment (2009). Washington and Lee Law Review, Vol. 66, p. 1683, 2009, Lewis & Clark Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2009-9, Available at SSRN:

Juliet P. Stumpf (Contact Author)

Lewis & Clark College - Lewis & Clark Law School ( email )

10101 S. Terwilliger Boulevard
Portland, 97219-7762

University of Oxford - Border Criminologies ( email )

Manor Road Building
Manor Rd
Oxford, OX1 3UQ
United Kingdom

Lewis & Clark College Paul L Boley Library ( email )

10101 S. Terwilliger Blvd.
Portland, OR 97219
United States

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