from the United States District Court for the Southern
District of Texas
JONES, SMITH, and PRADO, Circuit Judges.
C. PRADO, Circuit Judge
Gonzalez-Segura was born out of wedlock in Mexico in 1969.
His father was a U.S. citizen, and his mother was a Mexican
national. Gonzalez- Segura now seeks derivative U.S.
citizenship. He believes two documents substantiate his
claim: his birth certificate (which a Mexican court revised
in 2007) and his father's 1970 holographic will. The
district court concluded that he could not as a matter of law
prove his derivative citizenship under former Immigration and
Nationality Act §§ 301(a)(7), 
309(a). We AFFIRM the district court's summary
judgment against him.
was born out of wedlock on June 13, 1969, in the Mexican
state of Tamaulipas. His biological mother is Natalia Segura,
a Mexican national. His biological father is Nicolas
Gonzalez, a U.S. citizen. He has two siblings from the same
1970, his father drafted a holographic will on the back of a
1963 land conveyance document. Translated from Spanish, the
1970 holographic will stated:
I Nicolas Gonzalez am writing this letter to state that I
am leaving this property for Natalia Segura and my sons
Ernesto, Ruben, and Ernesto Gonzalez paid in full and no debt
on this month of August 8, .
signature followed the note.
1972, his mother married Lorenzo Sandoval. That same year,
the couple registered Gonzalez-Segura with the Civil Registry
of Rio Bravo in Mexico, listing him as their son. The
registration did not acknowledge Gonzalez-Segura's
biological father, Nicolas.
years later, Nicolas died.
1990, Gonzalez-Segura obtained legal permanent residency in
the United States. Five years later, he was excluded and
deported under INA §§ 212(a)(2)(C),
212(a)(6)(B)(i), and 212(a)(7)(A)(i)(I). However, sometime
later, he returned to the United States. In 2004, he was
removed again after a drug offense conviction.
2007-when he was thirty-five years old-Gonzalez-Segura
brought a lawsuit against his mother, Lorenzo Sandoval, and
the Civil Registry of Rio Bravo. Gonzalez-Segura sought to
have a Tamaulipas court amend his birth certificate to list
Nicolas Gonzalez as his biological father. Gonzalez-Segura
prevailed in the suit, and the court ordered that his birth
certificate list Nicolas Gonzalez as his biological father.
October 2013, Gonzalez-Segura filed an N-600 Application for
Certificate of Citizenship with United States Citizenship and
Immigration Services. He asserted in the application that
Nicolas Gonzalez was his biological father, so he was
entitled to claim derivative citizenship.
October 2014, while in the custody of a Texas county's
sheriff's office, United States Immigration and Customs
Enforcement agents apprehended Gonzalez-Segura. He was
subsequently indicted for criminal reentry in violation of 8
U.S.C. § 1326. Soon after, his N-600 Application for
Certificate of Citizenship was denied.
following month, Gonzalez-Segura filed a petition before the
Fifth Circuit to review his citizenship claim. The next
month, he filed a motion to transfer the review to the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of Texas and filed a
motion for stay of removal. In January 2015, our Court
transferred his claim to the Southern District of Texas and
granted his motion for stay of removal.
February 2015, Gonzalez-Segura filed his suit in the Southern
District of Texas. Over a year later, the district court
ruled in favor of the Government on its motion for summary
judgment. The court subsequently entered a final judgment
dismissing Gonzalez-Segura's claims with prejudice. A few
days later, Gonzalez-Segura timely filed a notice of appeal.
district court had jurisdiction to resolve whether
Gonzalez-Segura raised "a genuine issue of material fact
about [his] nationality." 8 U.S.C. § 1252(b)(5)(B).
We have jurisdiction to review the final judgment of the
district court under 28 U.S.C. § 1291.
STANDARDS OF REVIEW
Reviewing Summary Judgment
judgment is appropriate "if the movant shows that there
is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant
is entitled to judgment as a matter of law."
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). Summary judgment is reviewed de novo,
"applying the same standard as . . . the district
court." United States v. Lawrence, 276 F.3d
193, 195 (5th Cir. 2001) (citations omitted). "Summary
judgment is appropriate when the movant is able to
demonstrate that the pleadings, affidavits, and other
evidence available to the court establish that there are no
genuine issues of material fact, and that the moving party is
entitled to summary judgment as a matter of law."
Hightower v. Tex. Hosp. Ass'n, 65 F.3d 443, 447
(5th Cir. 1995) (citations omitted). The panel "must
view the evidence introduced and all factual inferences from
the evidence in the light most favorable to the party
opposing summary judgment." Id. "However,
the non-movant must go beyond the pleadings and present
specific facts indicating a genuine issue for trial in order
to avoid summary judgment." Bluebonnet Hotel
Ventures, L.L.C. v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 754 F.3d
272, 276 (5th Cir. 2014). The panel may affirm summary
judgment on any ground the record supports. Id.
B. Reviewing Foreign Law
district court's determination of foreign law "must
be treated as a ruling on a question of law."
Fed.R.Civ.P. 44.1. This determination "is subject to de
novo review." Access Telecom, Inc. v. MCI Telecomms.
Corp., 197 F.3d 694, 713 (5th Cir. 1999) (citations
omitted). "In determining foreign law, the court may
consider any relevant material or source, including
testimony, whether or not submitted by a party or admissible
under the Federal Rules of Evidence." Fed.R.Civ.P. 44.1.
"[D]ifferences of opinion" regarding "the
content, applicability, or interpretation of foreign law do
not create a genuine issue as to any material fact under Rule
56." Access Telecom, 197 F.3d at 713 (citation
omitted). Thus, summary judgment is generally
"appropriate to determine the content of foreign
law." Id. (citation omitted).
Legal Framework for Gonzalez-Segura's Citizenship
case involves a complicated web of overlapping foreign and
domestic law. The statute governing Gonzalez-Segura's
claim to derivative citizenship is the version of the INA in
place at the time of his birth. Under that statute,
Gonzalez-Segura must establish his paternity by legitimation
in order to claim derivative citizenship. The INA also
dictates that his claim to legitimation is governed by the
laws of Tamaulipas, Mexico-where he resided as a child. Even
if he can prove his legitimation under Tamaulipan law, the
INA imposes an additional hurdle for claiming derivative
citizenship: legitimation must have occurred before