University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Dougall v. Sugarman IM-NY-0013
Docket / Court No. 71 Civil 992 ( S.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Immigration
Case Summary
In 1971, four permanent resident aliens who had been fired from their New York State civil service jobs because they were not U.S. citizens filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, challenging Section 53 of the New York Civil Service Law. Section 53 provided ... read more >
In 1971, four permanent resident aliens who had been fired from their New York State civil service jobs because they were not U.S. citizens filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, challenging Section 53 of the New York Civil Service Law. Section 53 provided that only U.S. citizens could hold competitive class state civil service positions. Plaintiffs alleged that Section 53 violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Supremacy Clause, and their right to interstate travel. Plaintiffs sought declaratory and injunctive relief, class certification and submission of the case to a three-judge court to determine the constitutionality of the Section 53.

The District Court (Judge Tenney) denied Defendants' motion to dismiss the case and recommended that a three judge court be convened. Dougall v. Sugarman, 330 F.Supp. 265 (S.D.N.Y. 1971). Chief Circuit Judge Henry J. Friendly of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals agreed and ordered that Plaintiffs' motions for declaratory judgment, injunctive relief and class certification be submitted to a three-judge court for consideration.

The three-judge court (Circuit Judge Joseph Edward Lumbard and District Judges Edward Cochrane McLean and Charles Henry Tenney) certified the case as a class action, with the class defined as "all permanent resident aliens residing in New York State who, but for the enforcement of Section 53, would otherwise be eligible to compete for employment in the competitive class of Civil Service." The three-judge court also granted declaratory and permanent injunctive relief, finding that Section 53 violated the Equal Protection Clause and the Supremacy Clause. Dougall v. Sugarman, 339 F.Supp. 906 (S.D.N.Y. 1971). Defendants appealed and the U.S. Supreme Court noted probable jurisdiction. Sugarman v. Dougall, 407 U.S. 908 (1972).

The Supreme Court (Justice Harry Blackmun) affirmed the ruling of the three-judge court, holding that Section 53's blanket ban on the employment of aliens in civil service positions had little or no relation to any legitimate state interest and therefore violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Sugarman v. Dougall, 413 U.S. 634 (1973). See also Sugarman v. Dougall, 413 U.S. 634 (1973) (J. Rehnquist Dissenting).

As there is no PACER docket available, we do not know whether there was any subsequent case activity in the District Court following the Supreme Court opinion.

Stephen Imm - 08/29/2007


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Immigration
Constitutional rights
Employment
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983
Defendant(s) Adminstrator of New York City Human Resources Administration
New York City Civil Service Commission
Plaintiff Description All permanent resident aliens residing in New York State who, but for the enforcement of Section 53, would otherwise be eligible to compete for employment in the competitive class of Civil Service.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1971 - n/a
Case Closing Year 1973
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
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 ]

Links The Oyez Project, Sugarman v. Dougall, 413 U.S. 634 (1973).
www.oyez.org
Posted: Jun. 25, 1973
By: Oyez Project (IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Opinion 05/24/1971 (330 F.Supp. 265) (S.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0013-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 11/09/1971 (339 F.Supp. 906) (S.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0013-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 05/12/1972 (407 U.S. 908)
IM-NY-0013-0007.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Appellant Brief 08/04/1972 ( 1972 WL 135794)
IM-NY-0013-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Appellee's Brief 09/16/1972 (1972 WL 135796 )
IM-NY-0013-0001.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion 06/25/1973 (413 U.S. 634)
IM-NY-0013-0006.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Judges Lumbard, Joseph Edward (Second Circuit)
IM-NY-0013-0003
McLean, Edward Cochrane (S.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0013-0003
Rehnquist, William Hubbs (SCOTUS)
IM-NY-0013-0006
Tenney, Charles Henry (S.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0013-0003 | IM-NY-0013-0004
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Broiles, David (Texas)
IM-NY-0013-0002
Evens, Lester (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003 | IM-NY-0013-0004
Gora, Joel M. (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0002
Stark, Jeffrey G (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003 | IM-NY-0013-0004
Wulf, Melvin L. (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Gordon, Judith A. (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003 | IM-NY-0013-0004
Lefkowitz, Louis J. (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003
Lewittes, Joel (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003
Rankin, J. Lee (New York)
IM-NY-0013-0003 | IM-NY-0013-0004
Tiernan, George R (Connecticut)
IM-NY-0013-0001
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -