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Case Name Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas v. Smith PB-TX-0013
Docket / Court 1:15-cv-01058-SS ( W.D. Tex. )
State/Territory Texas
Case Type(s) Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Planned Parenthood Litigation
Case Summary
On November 23, 2015, five Texas Planned Parenthoods (provider plaintiffs) and ten Medicaid patients (patient plaintiffs) of Planned Parenthood filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. The plaintiffs sued the Executive Commissioner and the Inspector General ... read more >
On November 23, 2015, five Texas Planned Parenthoods (provider plaintiffs) and ten Medicaid patients (patient plaintiffs) of Planned Parenthood filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. The plaintiffs sued the Executive Commissioner and the Inspector General of the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The plaintiffs, represented by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, asked the court for for class action certification; declaratory judgments; temporary, preliminary, and permanent injunctions; and attorney's fees. The plaintiffs claimed that HHSC had violated the Medicaid Act and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment by barring the provider plaintiffs from the Medicaid program.

Specifically, the plaintiffs explained that on October 21, 2015, the HHSC notified the provider plaintiffs that HHSC would soon terminate the Provider Plaintiffs' Medicaid Provider Agreement. The HHSC justified the termination using false allegations, which were primarily based on misleading videos leaked by anti-choice activists.

The HHSC claimed that the case was premature because they had not yet terminated the provider plaintiffs' Medicaid Provider Agreement. On January 27, 2016, U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks stayed the case pending a final termination letter. For nearly a year, the case lay relatively dormant. In this time, Texas and the U.S. Congress conducted separate investigations into the allegations against Planned Parenthood raised by the misleading videos. Planned Parenthood was repeatedly found free of wrongdoing. Nonetheless, on December 20, 2016, HHSC sent a final Notice of Termination to each provider plaintiff.

On January 17, 2017, the plaintiffs filed an amended complaint outlining the events since the order to stay the case. That day the court held a hearing on the plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent termination. On January 19, 2017, Judge Sparks entered an order temporarily enjoining the defendants from terminating the provider plaintiffs' Medicaid Provider Agreements until February 21, 2017.

On February 21, 2017, Judge Sparks granted the plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction, enjoining the defendants from terminating the Provider Plaintiffs' Medicaid Provider Agreements. The defendants appealed the preliminary injunction.

The plaintiffs then moved to withdraw their motion for class certification, which the court dismissed without prejudice on March 24, 2017.

As of March 15, 2018, litigation in the district and appeals courts is ongoing.

Gabriela Hybel - 02/22/2017
Virginia Weeks - 03/15/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Benefit Source
Medicaid
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Abortion
Contraception
Payment for care
Medical/Mental Health
Reproductive health care (including birth control, abortion, and others)
Plaintiff Type
State Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Title XIX of the Social Security (Medicaid) Act, 42 U.S.C §1396
Defendant(s) Health and Human Services Commission
Plaintiff Description Planned Parenthood Providers and Medicaid Patients
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Declaratory Judgment
Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Filing Year 2015
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
1:15-cv-01058-SS (W.D. Tex.)
PB-TX-0013-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/30/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief [Class Action] [ECF# 1]
PB-TX-0013-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/23/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief [Class Action] [ECF# 76]
PB-TX-0013-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/17/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 100] (W.D. Tex.)
PB-TX-0013-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/21/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Sparks, Sam (W.D. Tex.)
PB-TX-0013-0003 | PB-TX-0013-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Clapman, Alice (District of Columbia)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Evans, Roger K. (New York)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Krasnoff, Helene T. (District of Columbia)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Muniz, Richard (Illinois)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Ratakonda, Maithreyi (New York)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Sandman, Jennifer (New York)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Watkins, Thomas H. (Mississippi)
PB-TX-0013-0001 | PB-TX-0013-0002 | PB-TX-0013-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Biggs, Adam Arthur (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Cochran-McCall, Amanda J. (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Dahlberg, Shelley (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Rietvelt, Marc (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Stephens, Andrew Bowman (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000
Sweeten, Patrick Kinney (Texas)
PB-TX-0013-9000

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