University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Soskin v. Reinertson IM-CO-0002
Docket / Court 1:03-cv-00529-PSF ( D. Colo. )
State/Territory Colorado
Case Type(s) Immigration
Case Summary
On March 27, 2003, attorneys for the National Immigration Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants' Rights Project and other advocacy groups filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, challenging the provisions of ... read more >
On March 27, 2003, attorneys for the National Immigration Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants' Rights Project and other advocacy groups filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, challenging the provisions of Colorado Senate Bill 03-176 ("SB 03-176") that terminated Medicaid eligibility for lawfully present immigrants solely on the basis of their status as

non-citizens. Plaintiffs asserted that the law violated equal protection and due process. The Colorado law was enacted pursuant to a provision of the federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, 8 U.S.C.A. § 1612(b), which permitted the states deny certain public benefits to qualified aliens.

On April 1, 2003, the District Court (Judge Blackburn) issued a TRO, preventing the defendant from enforcing or implementing Colorado Senate Bill 03-176. A preliminary injunction hearing followed and Judge Blackburn dissolved the TRO and denied further relief to plaintiffs. Soskin v. Reinertson 257 F.Supp.2d 1320, 1320 (D.Colo. 2003). Plaintiffs' request for a stay pending appeal was denied.

On January 12, 2004, the U.S. Court of Appeals Tenth Circuit (Judge Hartz) affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded the case. The Appeals Court upheld the trial court's determination at the new law did not violate Equal Protection Clause. The Court, however, remanded to the District Court for entry of a preliminary injunction prohibiting the State from terminating benefits to any member of the class for failure to return redetermination forms unless the member has been given notice of the right to request a pre-termination hearing. Soskin v. Reinertson 353 F.3d 1242, 1242 (10th Cir. 2004).

On remand, the Court eventually dismissed the case per the stipulation of the parties with prejudice on the basis of mootness. It is unclear from the PACER docket whether the dismissal was the result of any agreed upon settlement.

Erica Woodruff - 08/07/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Federalism
General
Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)
Immigration
Constitutional rights
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing
Plaintiff Description A class of lawful aliens challenging the implementation of a Colorado law that would deny them Medicaid benefits.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Mixed
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement Voluntary Dismissal
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2005
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies 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 ]

Docket(s)
03-1162 (U.S. Court of Appeals) 12/23/2004
IM-CO-0002-9001 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
1:03-cv-00529-PSF (D. Colo.) 08/04/2005
IM-CO-0002-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint for Declaratory and Equitable Relief 03/27/2003
IM-CO-0002-0001 PDF | Detail
Opinion 04/01/2003 (260 F.Supp.2d 1055) (D. Colo.)
IM-CO-0002-0002 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 04/16/2003 (257 F.Supp.2d 1320) (D. Colo.)
IM-CO-0002-0003 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 01/12/2004 (353 F.3d 1242)
IM-CO-0002-0004 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Blackburn, Robert E. (D. Colo.)
IM-CO-0002-0002 | IM-CO-0002-0003
Figa, Phillip S. (D. Colo.)
IM-CO-0002-9000
Hartz, Harris L. (Tenth Circuit)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Henry, Robert Harlan (Tenth Circuit)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Kelly, Paul Joseph Jr. (Tenth Circuit)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Barker, Scott (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Broder, Tanya (California)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Cohan, Marc (New York)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9000 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Guttentag, Lucas (New York)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Joaquin, Linton (California)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Lessard, Gabrielle (California)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Mannix, Mary R. (New York)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Masciocchi, Stephen (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Pearson, Anne H. (New York)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Perkins, Jane (North Carolina)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Piche, Gregory R. (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0002 | IM-CO-0002-0003 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9000 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Scharf, Rebecca L. (New York)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Silverstein, Mark (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0001 | IM-CO-0002-0002 | IM-CO-0002-0003 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9000 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Defendant's Lawyers Bondy, Thomas M. (District of Columbia)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Fagan, Terence P. (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Hause, Ann (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0002 | IM-CO-0002-0003 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9000 | IM-CO-0002-9001
Herron, Patricia Dianne (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-9000
Holton, Anne Baudino (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-9000
McCallum, Robert D. Jr. (District of Columbia)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Miller, Eric D. (District of Columbia)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Salazar, Ken (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Suthers, John W. (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0004
Wolf, Ilene I. (Colorado)
IM-CO-0002-0002 | IM-CO-0002-0003 | IM-CO-0002-0004 | IM-CO-0002-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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