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2:14-cv-00055 #43

2:14-cv-00055 #43

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Published by Equality Case Files
Doc 43 - Plaintiffs' Second supplement to motion for preliminary injunction and certification (w/motion to file)
Doc 43 - Plaintiffs' Second supplement to motion for preliminary injunction and certification (w/motion to file)

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Published by: Equality Case Files on May 18, 2014
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05/19/2014

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Erik Strindberg (Bar No. 4154) Lauren I. Scholnick (Bar No. 7776) Kathryn Harstad (Bar No. 11012) STRINDBERG & SCHOLNICK, LLC 675 East 2100 South, Ste. 350 Salt Lake City, UT 84106 Telephone: (801) 359-4169 Facsimile: (801) 359-4313 erik@utahjobjustice.com lauren@utahjobjustice.com kass@utahjobjustice.com John Mejia (Bar No. 13965) Leah Farrell (Bar No. 13696) AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF UTAH FOUNDATION, INC. 355 N. 300 W. Salt Lake City, Utah 84103 Telephone: 801.521.9862 Facsimile: 801.532.2850 aclu@acluutah.org Joshua A. Block* ACLU LGBT Project 125 Broad Street, Floor 18  New York, New York, 10004 Telephone: (212) 549-2593 Facsimile: (212) 549-2650  jblock@aclu.org *Admitted pro hac vice Attorneys for Plaintiffs
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF UTAH CENTRAL DIVISION
Plaintiffs respectfully seek leave to file the following second supplement to apprise the Court of additional facts presented in connection with Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction and certification. JONELL EVANS, et al. Plaintiffs v. STATE OF UTAH, et al., Defendants.
MOTION TO FILE SECOND SUPPLEMENT AND [PROPOSED] SECOND SUPPLEMENT TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION AND CERTIFICATION
Case No. 2:14-cv-55 DAK
Case 2:14-cv-00055-DAK Document 43 Filed 05/17/14 Page 1 of 6
 
 
2
 
FACTS
1.
 
On April 10, 2014, Plaintiffs submitted a motion for leave to file a supplement to apprise the Court of additional facts in connection with Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction. Doc. Nos. 31-32. That motion was subsequently granted on May 13, 2014. Doc.  No. 41. 2.
 
In that supplement, Plaintiffs apprised the Court that, inter alia, (a) Judge Stone of the Utah State Court had granted a petition by Plaintiffs
Matthew Barraza and Tony Milner to adopt their son, J., (b) as part of that order, Judge Stone ordered Defendants to issue an amended  birth certificate for J., and (c)
 Defendants had filed a “Petition for Emergency Extraordinary Relief” in the Utah Supreme Court asking that Court to stay enforcement of Judge Stone’s order to issue an amended birth certificate. 3.
 
On April 16, 2014, Defendants filed a response that did not oppose Plaintiffs’ motion to supplement. Doc. No 33. 4.
 
In addition, on April 16, 2014, Defendants – in a reversal of their previous  position – moved to certify Plaintiffs’ state-law claims to the Utah Supreme Court. In that motion Defendants informed the Court that they had filed similar petitions for extraordinary relief in three other cases in which state courts had granted adoption petitions. Doc. No. 34. 5.
 
On April 17, 2014, Plaintiffs filed a response to Defendants’ motion for certification. Doc. No. 35. In that response, Plaintiffs reiterated their position that the Court may, in its discretion, certify state-law questions to the Utah Supreme Court. But Plaintiffs also reiterated that, regardless of the ultimate outcome of the state law claims, this Court should issue a preliminary injunction based on Plaintiffs’ federal claims so Plaintiffs’ federal rights would
Case 2:14-cv-00055-DAK Document 43 Filed 05/17/14 Page 2 of 6
 
 
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remain protected during the pendency of any additional proceedings. 6.
 
On May 7, 2014, according to news reports, in a separate case involving a different same-sex couple who had been granted an adoption petition, Judge Stone issued an order for the Attorney General and other state officials to show cause why they should not be held in contempt for refusing to comply with the court’s order to issue an amended birth certificate.
See
 http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/57949865-78/utah-state-court-adoption.html.csp. 7.
 
On May 16, 2014, the Utah Supreme Court issued an order stating that “[e]nforcement of the district court orders mandating or authorizing Petitioner to issue birth certificates is stayed until the Court can address the petitions for extraordinary relief.” (Attached as Exhibit A.) The Court also stated that the clerk would issue a schedule for full briefing and oral argument. 8.
 
The Utah Supreme Court order did not state that the Defendants’ petition for extraordinary relief was procedurally proper or that Defendants had standing to collaterally attack a court judgment issued in connection with a final adoption decree. The court simply stayed enforcement of the lower courts’ decisions while it considers those issues after briefing and oral argument.
DISCUSSION
In light of the foregoing events, Plaintiffs respectfully reiterate their requests for the Court to (a) certify Plaintiffs’ state-law claims to the Utah Supreme Court and (b) issue a  preliminary injunction based,
inter alia
, on Plaintiffs’ federal law claims to ensure that Plaintiffs’ marriages continue to be recognized during the pendency of any additional proceedings.
Case 2:14-cv-00055-DAK Document 43 Filed 05/17/14 Page 3 of 6

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