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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Hamby v. Parnell PB-AK-0004
Docket / Court 3:14-cv-00089-TMB ( D. Alaska )
State/Territory Alaska
Case Type(s) Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Same-Sex Marriage
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On May 12, 2014, five same-sex couples living in Alaska filed this lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska, against the state of Alaska. The plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court to declare Alaska's same-sex marriage ban ... read more >
On May 12, 2014, five same-sex couples living in Alaska filed this lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska, against the state of Alaska. The plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court to declare Alaska's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional, to recognize valid marriages carried out in other states, and to enjoin the enforcement of the marriage ban.

In their complaint, the plaintiffs claimed that Alaska's ban on same-sex marriage violated their rights under the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses. They also claimed that the inability to enter into marriage with their chosen spouse interfered with their procurement of benefits and formation of their families.

The original judge presiding over the case, H. Russell Holland, recused himself on May 21, 2014. The case was then reassigned to Judge Timothy M. Burgess. On October 12, 2014, Judge Burgess granted the plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment, declaring Alaska's same-sex marriage laws unconstitutional for violating the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the Constitution and enjoining enforcement of any laws that prohibit same-sex couples from marrying or deny recognition of lawful same-sex marriages from other states. 56 F.Supp.3d 1056.

On October 14, 2014, the defendants appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. On October 15, 2014, the Court of Appeals granted a temporary stay of the District Court's judgment until midnight on October 17, allowing appellants to seek a stay from the Supreme Court of the United States. On October 17, 2014, the Supreme Court denied the application for stay, dissolving the temporary stay granted by the Court of Appeals.

On February 27, 2015, the Ninth Circuit granted the plaintiffs' (opposed) motion to stay the appeal pending the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges (PB-OH-0003 in this Clearinghouse). The proceedings were stayed until 14 days after the decision issued in Obergefell .

On April 15, 2015, the district court granted plaintiffs’ motion for reasonable attorneys’ fees and expenses through to October 2014 in the amount of $127,720.90. Two of plaintiffs’ counsel filed a motion for reconsideration of the April 15 order on May 13, 2015. On July 1, 2015, the Ninth Circuit dismissed the appeal, with the costs allocated pursuant to the stipulation. On September 2015, the district court held that the motion for reconsideration failed to provide any justification warranting the use of the ‘extraordinary remedy’. Since then, there has been no further action in this case.

Megan Dolan - 06/27/2014
Claire Lally - 02/09/2015
David Hamstra - 03/22/2015
Dawn Lui - 12/04/2018

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Affected Gender
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Equal Protection
Content of Injunction
Discrimination Prohibition
Sex discrimination
Sexual orientatation
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Defendant(s) State of Alaska
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are five same-sex couples living in Alaska and wish for the state to recognize their marriages conducted in other states and to marry in Alaska.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Declaratory Judgment
Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement Confession of Judgment
Order Duration 2014 - 2015
Filed 05/12/2014
Case Closing Year 2015
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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  See this case at (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
3:14-cv-00089-TMB (D. Alaska)
PB-AK-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/02/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
PB-AK-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/12/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Recusal [ECF# 3]
PB-AK-0004-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/21/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
ORDER (56 F.Supp.3d 1056) (D. Alaska)
PB-AK-0004-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | External Link | Detail
Date: 10/12/2014
Judgment in a Civil Case [ECF# 43] (D. Alaska)
PB-AK-0004-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/14/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Burgess, Timothy Mark (D. Alaska) show/hide docs
PB-AK-0004-0003 | PB-AK-0004-0004 | PB-AK-0004-9000
Holland, Hezekiah Russel (D. Alaska) show/hide docs
Plaintiff's Lawyers Gardner, Heather Leigh (Alaska) show/hide docs
PB-AK-0004-0001 | PB-AK-0004-9000
Mendel, Allison E. (Alaska) show/hide docs
PB-AK-0004-0001 | PB-AK-0004-9000
Shortell, Caitlin (Alaska) show/hide docs
PB-AK-0004-0001 | PB-AK-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Milks, William E. (Alaska) show/hide docs
Wakley, Kevin Todd (Alaska) show/hide docs
Other Lawyers Decker, Joshua A. (Alaska) show/hide docs
Goad, Amanda C. (California) show/hide docs
Orlansky, Susan (Alaska) show/hide docs
Stenson, Thomas W. (Alaska) show/hide docs

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