BOSTON (AP) — A federal lawsuit challenging the Trump administration's practice of targeting for deportation immigrants who are pursuing legal status through their marriages to U.S. citizens will move forward.

Judge Mark Wolf on Thursday has denied the federal government's bid to dismiss the lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts. Wolf says officials cannot deport immigrants simply because they're subject to a final order of removal if the immigrant is seeking a waiver to remain in the U.S. while they try to become legal residents.

The ACLU says federal officials are ignoring regulations that permit certain spouses of U.S. citizens to remain with their families in the country while they try to obtain lawful immigration status.

Wolf also rejected the government's argument that the court doesn't have jurisdiction to hear the case.