Two regulations that predate the passage of IIRIRA (collectively referred to as "the departure bar") provide that a noncitizen who is the subject of immigration proceedings may not make a motion to reopen or reconsider “subsequent to his or her departure from the United States.” In Matter of Armendarez-Mendez, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) held that the departure bar survived the passage of IIRIRA. Previously, the Ninth Circuit had held that the departure bar does not apply to noncitizens who departed the United States either before removal proceedings have commenced, or after removal proceedings were completed. The court has also held that the departure bar is invalid as applied to a noncitizen who is involuntarily removed from the United States.
In Toor v. Lynch, the court addressed whether the departure bar may be applied to a noncitizen who voluntarily departs the United States during removal proceedings. Consistent with the other circuits who have addressed the question, the Ninth Circuit held that the departure bar is inapplicable regardless of how the non-citizen left the United States. Rejecting the decision in Armendarez-Mendez, the court stated that "Congress has directly spoken to the precise question at issue; the text of IIRIRA makes clear that the statutory right to file a motion to reopen and a motion to reconsider is not limited by whether the individual has departed the United States." "IIRIRA limits the right to file a motion to reopen and a motion to reconsider by number, time, and content, but not in any respect by whether the individual has departed the United States."
Notably, the Court stated that because Toor's motion to reopen was filed in a timely manner, it need not decide if the departure bar could be applied to untimely motions to reopen.
The full text of Toor v. Lynch can be found here: http://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2015/06/17/10-73212.pdf