University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Revelis v. Napolitano IM-IL-0017
Docket / Court 1:11-cv-01991 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Immigration
Special Collection Same-Sex Marriage
Case Summary
This action was brought on March 23, 2011, by a married couple who sought an order allowing the U.S. citizen spouse to petition for his foreign national husband to become a permanent resident of the United States. Such petition is allowed for heterosexual spouses, but under the federal Defense of ... read more >
This action was brought on March 23, 2011, by a married couple who sought an order allowing the U.S. citizen spouse to petition for his foreign national husband to become a permanent resident of the United States. Such petition is allowed for heterosexual spouses, but under the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), not for same-sex spouses.

The U.S. citizen plaintiff filed his visa petition on January 9, 2011; when he brought the lawsuit, it had not been acted on. But they pointed out that the position of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) was that because of DOMA, it lacked authority to allow a spousal petition for a same-sex couple. Likewise, the Board of Immigration Appeals could not hold DOMA unconstitutional. Accordingly, plaintiffs sought relief by the district court.

On January 5, 2012, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago (Judge Harry D. Leinenweber), found that the plaintiffs could proceed with their lawsuit even though USCIS had not yet rendered a final decision on the visa application. 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 1330, at *16. On July 12, the Court stayed the matter to give USCIS sufficient time to adjudicate the application. USCIS reached its decision on August 6, 2012, and informed the Court the following week that it was denying the visa, both because of DOMA and separately (and alone sufficient, the government said) for other, unrelated reasons. Those non-DOMA reasons were explained in a document filed under seal.

On September 20, 2012, the Court granted the U.S.'s oral motion to dismiss without prejudice. Presumably this was with the agreement of the plaintiff, but no further details appear in the case record.

- 11/29/2012
Claire Lally - 03/13/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Discrimination-basis
Sexual orientatation
General
Disparate Treatment
Marriage
Immigration
Family
Visas - criteria
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.
Defendant(s) Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description The Plaintiffs are two men, married in the State of Iowa; one is a U.S. citizen and the other is a foreign national.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Unknown
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Unknown
Source of Relief Unknown
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2012
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Limited Partnership
http://www.limitedpartnershipmovie.com/
By: Thomas G. Miller
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Threats to the Future of the Immigration Class Action
Washington University Journal of Law and Policy
By: Jill E. Family (Widener University School of Law)
Citation: 27 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol'y 71 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  United States Government says L.A. Gay Couple’s 1975 Marriage is Valid
The Pride L.A.
Written: Jun. 07, 2016
By: Troy Masters
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:11-cv-1991 (N.D. Ill.) 09/20/2012
IM-IL-0017-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Petition for Declaratory Judgment and Other Relief 03/23/2011
IM-IL-0017-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER 01/05/2012 (844 F.Supp.2d 915) (C.D. Ill.)
IM-IL-0017-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Statement 07/12/2012
IM-IL-0017-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
NOTICE OF AGENCY ACTION AND MOTION FOR AN EARLIER STATUS HEARING 08/13/2012
IM-IL-0017-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notification of Docket Entry 09/20/2012 (N.D. Ill.)
IM-IL-0017-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Leinenweber, Harry Daniel (N.D. Ill.)
IM-IL-0017-0002 | IM-IL-0017-0003 | IM-IL-0017-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Benno, Heather M. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000
Burton, Justin Russell (Illinois)
IM-IL-0017-0001 | IM-IL-0017-9000
Cobb, Erin Christine (Illinois)
IM-IL-0017-0001 | IM-IL-0017-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Carlson, Jesi J. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-0005 | IM-IL-0017-9000
Delery, Stuart F. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-0005
Fitzgerald, Patrick J. (Illinois)
IM-IL-0017-0005
Kline, David J. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-0005
Orrick, William Horsley III (California)
IM-IL-0017-0005
Oswald, Craig A (Illinois)
IM-IL-0017-0005 | IM-IL-0017-9000
Robins, Jeffrey S (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-0005
Other Lawyers Bartolomucci, H. Christopher (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000
Dugan, Conor Brendan (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000
Filamor, John D. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000
Kircher, Kerry W. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000
Tatelman, Todd B. (District of Columbia)
IM-IL-0017-9000

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