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Case Name Love v. Johnson PB-MI-0010
Docket / Court 2:15-cv-11834-NGE-EAS ( E.D. Mich. )
State/Territory Michigan
Case Type(s) Public Benefits / Government Services
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National (all projects)
Michigan ACLU
Case Summary
On May 21, 2015, the six transgender individuals filed this lawsuit in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The plaintiffs sued the Secretary of the State of Michigan under the Declaratory Judgment Act and 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. The complaint alleged that the current Drivers ... read more >
On May 21, 2015, the six transgender individuals filed this lawsuit in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The plaintiffs sued the Secretary of the State of Michigan under the Declaratory Judgment Act and 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. The complaint alleged that the current Drivers License policy, put in place by the Secretary, violated the plaintiffs' rights to privacy (U.S. Const. amend. 14), free speech (U.S. Const. amed. 1), equal protection, interstate travel (U.S. Const. art. IV, § 2, cl. 1), and independence in making important medical decisions. The plaintiffs, represented by the ACLU, asked the court to order the State to change the Drivers License policy and put in its place a system, like those found in Washington and California, which allow transgender persons to change their gender identification without obtaining an amended birth certificate or undergoing gender reassignment surgery.

Obtaining an amended birth certificate can be difficult if not impossible. Not every transgender person needs or wants surgery and many people do not have insurance coverage or the money to pay for it. Most transgender people do not undergo such a procedure.

On November 16, 2015, the court (Judge Edmunds) denied Defendant's motion for dismissal, rejecting defendants' argument that Plaintiffs had failed to state a constitutional claim. The court decided that individuals have a privacy interest in the disclosure of information likely to result in the threat of bodily harm, and therefore, requiring Plaintiffs to disclose their transgender status directly implicates their fundamental right to privacy. 2015 WL 7180471.

This case is ongoing.

Erin Pamukcu - 10/09/2015
Katherine Reineck - 12/05/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Freedom of speech/association
Right to travel
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Discrimination-basis
Gender identity
General
Access to public accommodations - governmental
Classification / placement
Drivers Licenses
Gay/lesbian/transgender
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Race
Race, unspecified
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Michigan Department of State
Plaintiff Description The plaintiff's are all members of the transgender community who are seeking to obtain Michigan Drivers Licenses that correctly identify their gender.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National (all projects)
Michigan ACLU
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Unknown
Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
2:15-cv-11834 (E.D. Mich.) 05/26/2015
PB-MI-0010-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 05/21/2015
PB-MI-0010-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Opinion Denying Defendant's Motion to Dismiss 11/16/2015 (2015 WL 7180471) (E.D. Mich.)
PB-MI-0010-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Edmunds, Nancy Garlock (E.D. Mich.)
PB-MI-0010-0002 | PB-MI-0010-0002 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Anderson, Jacki Lynn (Illinois)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Derksen, Michael Frederik (Illinois)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Gilford, Steven R (Illinois)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Kaplan, Jay (Michigan)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Knight, John A. (Illinois)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Korobkin, Daniel S. (Michigan)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Steinberg, Michael J. (Michigan)
PB-MI-0010-0001 | PB-MI-0010-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Barton, Denise C. (Michigan)
PB-MI-0010-9000
Grill, Erik A. (Michigan)
PB-MI-0010-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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