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Case Name Gilardi v. Dep't of Health and Human Services [Gilardi v. Sebelius] FA-DC-0004
Docket / Court 1:13-cv-00104-EGS ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Speech and Religious Freedom
Special Collection Contraception Insurance Mandate
Case Summary
On January 24, 2013, Freshway Logistics and Fresh Unlimited (d/b/a Freshway Foods) and their owners filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the Federal Government under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (42 U.S.C. § 2000bb) and the ... read more >
On January 24, 2013, Freshway Logistics and Fresh Unlimited (d/b/a Freshway Foods) and their owners filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the Federal Government under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (42 U.S.C. § 2000bb) and the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. § 706(2)). The plaintiffs, represented by public interest attorneys from the American Center for Law and Justice, sought to enjoin enforcement of provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) extending universal contraception coverage in employer-sponsored private health insurance coverage. The plaintiffs contended that this mandatory contraception coverage violated their sincerely held religious beliefs and First Amendment rights.

On March 3, 2013, the District Court (Judge Emmet Sullivan) denied the plaintiff's motion for preliminary injunction. 926 F.Supp.2d 273. On March 5, 2013, the plaintiffs filed an interlocutory appeal of the denial of preliminary injunction. On March 29, 2013, the D.C. Circuit Court granted an injunction pending appeal.

On November 1, 2013, the D.C. Court of Appeals held that the District Court erred in denying the plaintiffs a preliminary injunction with the respect to the individual owners and remanded for consideration of other preliminary-injunction factors. The Court held the company owners' religious freedom was burdened when they chose between violating their beliefs and paying a penalty. The Court affirmed, however, the denial of a preliminary injunction with respect to the Freshway companies, holding that corporations could not exercise religious beliefs. 733 F.3d 1208. This case was remanded to the D.C. District Court.

Both the government and the plaintiffs sought review in the Supreme Court. The two petitions were held at the Supreme Court while the Court decided Burwell v. Hobby Lobby (also known as Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius). The Hobby Lobby decision issued on June 30, 2014: In 5-4 opinion by Justice Alito, the Court held that the HHS regulations imposing the contraceptive mandate violated RFRA, when applied to closely-held for-profit corporations. (The Court emphasized, however, that alternative methods for meeting the government's asserted interest were available.) The next day, the Supreme Court vacated the D.C. Circuit's opinion and remanded for further consideration. (Technically, the Court denied the government's petition, but granted the plaintiffs' petition, vacated the judgment, and remanded.)

On August 18, 2014, the District Court granted a preliminary injunction to allow the plaintiffs to decide how they would like to proceed following the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision. On October 20, 2014, the District Court granted a permanent injunction for the plaintiffs against enforcement of the contraceptive services mandate and associated sanctions, with the agreement of the plaintiffs and the government.

On March 27, 2015 the parties jointly filed a status report stating the parties had reached an agreement on attorneys' fees and costs and they were paid, and the case was awaiting an entry of final judgment. The case is presumed closed.

Wyatt Fore - 04/12/2013
Richard Jolly - 03/16/2014
Kate Craddock - 02/05/2016
Taylor Brook - 02/15/2018

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Constitutional Clause
Free Exercise Clause
Freedom of speech/association
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Hospital/Health Department
Religion discrimination
Religious programs / policies
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Non-government for profit
Causes of Action Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Religious Freedom Rest. Act/Religious Land Use and Inst. Persons Act (RFRA/RLUIPA)
Defendant(s) U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services
U.S. Dept. of Labor
U.S. Dept. of the Treasury
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are business owners who oppose the use of contraception for religious reasons, and therefore object to the contraception mandate in the ACA.
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
None yet
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Order Duration 2014 - n/a
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing FA-DC-0006 : Barron Industries, Inc. v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0007 : Trijicon, Inc. v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0008 : Johnson Welded Products, Inc. v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0009 : Willis & Willis PLC v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0014 : C.W. Zumbeil v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0010 : Midwest Fastener Corp. v. Sebelius (D.D.C.)
13-5069 (U.S. Court of Appeals)
FA-DC-0004-9001.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/08/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
1:13-cv-104 (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/27/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
FA-DC-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/24/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Response to Court Order at Docket Entry 11 [ECF# 18]
FA-DC-0004-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/06/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 21]
FA-DC-0004-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/08/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amicus Brief of the State of Ohio in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 27]
FA-DC-0004-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/22/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [from trial court denying preliminary injunction for plaintiffs] [ECF# 33] (2013 WL 781150 / 2013 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 28719) (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0004-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 03/03/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Circuit Court Opinion [granting injunction pending appeal] [Ct. of App. ECF# 41]
FA-DC-0004-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/29/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
[D.C. Circuit Opinion] (733 F.3d 1208)
FA-DC-0004-0007.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 11/01/2013
Source: U.S. Court of Appeals website
Certiorari -- Summary Disposition (134 S.Ct. 2902)
FA-DC-0004-0008.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 07/01/2014
Source: Supreme Court website
Order [ECF# 44] (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0004-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/18/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 49] (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0004-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/20/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Brown, Janice Rogers (D.C. Circuit)
FA-DC-0004-0006 | FA-DC-0004-0007 | FA-DC-0004-9001
Edwards, Harry Thomas (D.C. Circuit)
Garland, Merrick B. (D.C. Circuit)
Griffith, Thomas Beall (D.C. Circuit)
Henderson, Karen LeCraft (D.S.C., D.C. Circuit)
Kavanaugh, Brett M. (D.C. Circuit)
Randolph, Arthur Raymond (D.C. Circuit)
Rogers, Judith Ann Wilson (D.C. Circuit)
FA-DC-0004-0006 | FA-DC-0004-9001
Sullivan, Emmet G. (D.D.C.)
FA-DC-0004-0005 | FA-DC-0004-0009 | FA-DC-0004-0010 | FA-DC-0004-9000
Tatel, David S. (D.C. Circuit)
FA-DC-0004-0006 | FA-DC-0004-9001
Plaintiff's Lawyers Gammill, Carly F. (Tennessee)
Manion, Francis J (Kentucky)
FA-DC-0004-0001 | FA-DC-0004-0002 | FA-DC-0004-0003 | FA-DC-0004-9000 | FA-DC-0004-9001
May, Colby M. (District of Columbia)
FA-DC-0004-0001 | FA-DC-0004-0002 | FA-DC-0004-0003 | FA-DC-0004-9000 | FA-DC-0004-9001
Surtees, Geoffrey R. (Kentucky)
FA-DC-0004-0001 | FA-DC-0004-0002 | FA-DC-0004-0003 | FA-DC-0004-9000
White, Edward L. III (Michigan)
FA-DC-0004-0001 | FA-DC-0004-0002 | FA-DC-0004-0003 | FA-DC-0004-9000
Zimmerman, Erik M. (Kentucky)
FA-DC-0004-0001 | FA-DC-0004-0002 | FA-DC-0004-0003 | FA-DC-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Berwick, Benjamin Leon (District of Columbia)
Brinkmann, Beth S (District of Columbia)
Delery, Stuart F. (District of Columbia)
Klein, Alisa B. (District of Columbia)
Machen, Ronald C (District of Columbia)
Stern, Mark B. (District of Columbia)
Other Lawyers Blatt, Lisa Schiavo (District of Columbia)
Bordlee, Dorinda (Kentucky)
Colby, Kimberlee Wood (Virginia)
Davidow, Charles E. (District of Columbia)
Dewart, Deborah Jane (North Carolina)
Francisco, Noel (District of Columbia)
Gonen, Julianna Susan (District of Columbia)
Greenberger, Marcia D. (District of Columbia)
Joseph, Lawrence J (District of Columbia)
Katerberg, Robert J (District of Columbia)
Khan, Ayesha N. (District of Columbia)
Kisloff, Michelle A. (District of Columbia)
Lipper, Gregory M. (District of Columbia)
Mach, Daniel (District of Columbia)
Macurdy, Andrew Scot (District of Columbia)
Nelson, Frederick Dickson (Ohio)
FA-DC-0004-0004 | FA-DC-0004-9000
Perkins, Martha Jane (North Carolina)
Pizer, Jennifer Carol (California)
Pratt, Jennifer L. (Ohio)
Saunders, William Lee Jr. (District of Columbia)
Schneider, Bruce Harvey (New York)
Taylor, Camilla B. (Illinois)
Ude, Thomas W. Jr. (New York)

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