University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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S P E C I A L   C O L L E C T I O N
COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)

This page collects cases that address the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing, etc. (We're not able to catalog every single-person request for release, but are presenting the cases affecting multiple persons.) We have also made this CSV report available, which shows some details of these cases.

In addition to cases, in many states there have been court orders directing releases and other COVID-19 responses. To see a catalog of these, check out the Prison Policy Initiative's list of jail/prison-related COVID-19 responses, and the spreadsheet compiled by the UCLA Law School, here.

If you know of a case NOT listed here, please email us: clearinghouse@umich.edu (We'll try to update this page in close-to-real-time.)
The below cases represent a special subset of the full Clearinghouse collection.
Your search returned 468 results Save Search As:       
1 Collins v. Meyers
1:21-cv-02713 (D. Colo.)
Filed 10/07/2021 - Closed 2021
Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade,
Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade,
Public Benefits / Government Services
PB-CO-0008
Denver County
Coding Complete
Resort Meeting Source, a Colorado-based event planning company and its CEO filed suit in the District of Colorado on October 7, 2021 against the Executive Director of the Colorado Office of Economic and International Trade (OEIT). The plaintiff brought suit under 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983 for an alleged breach of the Equal Protection Clause of the ... [view]
2 Agnew v. New York City Department of Corrections
813431/2021E (State Court)
Filed 10/04/2021 - Closed 2021
New York City Department of Correction
Jail Conditions
JC-NY-0084
New York City
Coding In Process
Summary not yet on record [view]
3 Brnovich v. Biden
2:21-cv-01568 (D. Ariz.)
Filed 09/14/2021 - Case Ongoing
United States
Immigration and/or the Border
IM-AZ-0032
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This is a case brought by Arizona's Attorney General challenging the Biden administration's planned vaccine mandate as unconstitutional under the Equal Protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
On September 9, 2021, President Biden announced a broad plan to increase vaccination rates nationwide. The plan would require ... [view]
4 United States v. Texas; Annunciation House v. Abbott
3:21-cv-00173 (W.D. Tex.)
Filed 08/30/2021 - Case Ongoing
State of Texas
Immigration and/or the Border
IM-TX-0061
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This is a case about Texas Governor Greg Abbot's executive order that prevented anyone other than law-enforcement officials from transporting multiple categories of non-citizen migrants regardless of unaccompanied minor, asylum, or refugee status. On July 30, 2021, the United States filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court ... [view]
5 Catchings v. Wilson
1:21-cv-00428-GLR (D. Md.)
Filed 02/20/2021 - Closed 2021
Warden
Chesapeake Detention Facility
Jail Conditions
JC-MD-0018
Baltimore City
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This class action lawsuit was filed on February 20, 2021 by detainees in the Chesapeake Detention Facility in Baltimore, Maryland, who sought extra protections from COVID-19 and, in some cases, release. The parties settled the case in April 2021.
This is a lawsuit challenging the Chesapeake Detention Facility's response to ... [view]
6 Public Counsel v. Presiding Judge, Superior Court of LA Cty
21STCV05124 (State Court)
Filed 02/09/2021 - Closed 2021
Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County
Criminal Justice (Other)
CJ-CA-0028
Los Angeles County
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: In this case, various attorneys filed a lawsuit to stop the Los Angeles Superior Courts from requiring in-person appearances for non-essential civil matters, like traffic and unlawful detainer matters. The plaintiffs filed a request for a temporary restraining order, but a month later filed a dismissal and the case is now closed ... [view]
7 Huisha-Huisha v. Mayorkas
1:21-cv-00100 (D.D.C.)
Filed 01/12/2021 - Case Ongoing
Department of Homeland Security
Immigration and/or the Border
IM-DC-0096
Coding Complete
This is a case about immigration policy that restricted refugee and asylee entry into the United States on account of health concerns around the coronavirus pandemic. On January 12, 2021, families of asylum- and refugee-seekers, who were detained by the Department of Homeland Security, sued the U.S. federal government for humanitarian protection ... [view]
8 Harper v. Cuomo
9:21-cv-00019 (N.D.N.Y.)
Filed 01/08/2021 - Case Ongoing
New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
Prison Conditions
Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
PC-NY-0081
Albany County
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This putative class action was filed on June 16, 2020 by medically vulnerable prisoners in New York's Adirondack Correctional Facility. The plaintiffs sought extra protections from COVID-19. A magistrate judge denied the plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction on March 1, 2021.
This is a case about COVID-19 precautions ... [view]
9 Holden v. Zucker
801592/2021E (State Court)
Filed 2021 - Case Ongoing
no defendants on record
Prison Conditions
PC-NY-0085
Coding In Process
Summary not yet on record [view]
10 Campos v. Kijakazi
1:21-cv-05143 (E.D.N.Y.)
Filed 2021 - Case Ongoing
no defendants on record
Public Benefits / Government Services
PB-NY-0040
Coding In Process
This case concerns individuals who experienced serious disruptions to their Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits because the Social Security Administration (SSA) stopped processing certain paperwork and closed its offices during the COVID-19 pandemic. Justice in Aging, the New York Legal Assistance Group, and private counsel filed the suit ... [view]
11 Wright v. Anderson
2:20-cv-03704 (D.N.J.)
Filed 04/06/2021 - Case Ongoing
Essex County Correctional Facility
Immigration and/or the Border
IM-NJ-0015
Essex County
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This habeas petition was filed on April 6, 2020 by a group of immigration detainees with underlying medical conditions housed in the Essex County Correctional Facility or the Elizabeth Detention Center, seeking release in light of COVID-19. On April 17, the Court granted a temporary restraining order for five of the petitioners ... [view]
12 Seaport House Hopkins v. Cuomo
1:20-cv-10932 (S.D.N.Y.)
Filed 12/25/2020 - Closed 2021
Governor of the State of New York
Presidential/Gubernatorial Authority
PR-NY-0011
Albany County
Coding Complete
Summary not yet on record [view]
13 Ryan v. Smith
3:20-cv-00843-SDD-SDJ (M.D. La.)
Filed 12/14/2020 - Case Ongoing
Judges
19th Judicial District Court of Louisiana
Criminal Justice (Other)
CJ-LA-0014
East Baton Rouge Parish
Coding Complete
COVID Summary: This is a class action suit regarding the legality of detention orders that are holding detainees at East Baton Rouge Parish Prison for up to years and detrimental to life during the COVID-19 pandemic. The plaintiffs moved for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction on December 14, 2020, but withdrew the request for ... [view]
14 Weikert v. Elder
1:20-cv-03646 (D. Colo.)
Filed 12/13/2020 - Case Ongoing
Sheriff of El Paso County, Colorado
El Paso County Sheriff's Office
Jail Conditions
JC-CO-0012
El Paso County
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This putative class action was filed on December 20, 2020 by a group of medically vulnerable detainees at the El Paso County Jail in Colorado, seeking reasonable COVID-19 safety measures. The Court granted a stipulated preliminary injunction on January 4, 2021.
This case is about the detainment conditions of individuals ... [view]
15 Malcolm v. Starr
0:20-cv-02503 (D. Minn.)
Filed 12/09/2020 - Closed 2021
Federal Correctional Institution, Waseca
Federal Correctional Institution, Waseca
Prison Conditions
PC-MN-0005
Waseca County
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This habeas action and putative class action lawsuit was filed on December 9, 2020 by a group of medically vulnerable incarcerated individuals in FCI-Waseca, seeking release or home confinement and changes to the COVID-19 procedures in the prison. The court denied the petitioners' temporary restraining order and dismissed the ... [view]
16 Smith v. Barr
2:20-cv-00630-JRS (S.D. Ind.)
Filed 11/25/2020 - Closed 2021
Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
Prison Conditions
Criminal Justice (Other)
PC-IN-0027
Washington
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: Two individuals incarcerated at Terre Haute Correctional Complex filed this lawsuit on behalf of all individuals who were or would be incarcerated at Terre Haute during the COVID-19 pandemic. They sought injunctive relief to stop the defendants from conducting federal executions, which drew hundreds of individuals from all over ... [view]
17 Alabama Association of Realtors v. U.S. Dep't of Health and Human Services
1:20-cv-03377 (D.D.C.)
Filed 11/20/2020 - Closed 2021
United States Department of Justice
United States Department of Justice
Presidential/Gubernatorial Authority
PR-DC-0019
District of Columbia County
Coding In Process
COVID-19 Summary: This civl action was filed on November 20, 2020 by two trade associations, three limited liability companies, and two individual landlords, seeking a judgment setting aside the CDC's eviction moratorium. The district court granted summary judgment for the plaintiffs but stayed the case pending appeal on May 5, 2021. The Supreme ... [view]
18 Hallinan v. Scarantino
5:20-CT-3333-M (E.D.N.C.)
Filed 10/26/2020 - Case Ongoing
Warden of Federal Correctional Complex Butner
Federal Correctional Complex Butner
Prison Conditions
PC-NC-0022
Coding In Process
COVID-19 Summary: This putative class action lawsuit and habeas petition was filed by ten incarcerated individuals at Federal Correctional Complex Butner on October 26, 2020, seeking safety remedies and release. On May 11, 2021, the Court stayed the case. Note that this is a successor case to Hallinan v. Scarantino, 5:20-hc-02088 (E.D.N.C.) ... [view]
19 Baker v. Minnesota Department of Corrections
62-cv-20-5143 (State Court)
Filed 10/22/2020 - Case Ongoing
Minnesota Department of Corrections
Prison Conditions
PC-MN-0006
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This is a class action petition for a writ of mandamus alleging that the Minnesota Department of Corrections failed in its legal duty to protect individuals under its custody or control from COVID-19.
On October 22, 2020, thirteen individuals in the custody and control of the Minnesota Department of Corrections (MNDOC) ... [view]
20 Terkel v. CDC
6:20-cv-00564-JC (E.D. Tex.)
Filed 10/22/2020 - Case Ongoing
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Presidential/Gubernatorial Authority
PR-TX-0001
Atlanta
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This civil action was filed on October 22, 2020 by one individual landlord and six business organizations challenging the validity of the CDC eviction moratorium under the United States Constitution and the Administrative Procedure Act. The Court granted summary judgment for the plaintiffs on February 25, 2021, and the defendants ... [view]
21 Mi Familia Vota v. Abbott
5:20-cv-00830 (W.D. Tex.)
Filed 10/16/2020 - Case Ongoing
no defendants on record
Election/Voting Rights
VR-TX-0456
Coding In Process
Summary not yet on record [view]
22 Agudath Israel of America v. Cuomo
1:20-cv-04834 (E.D.N.Y.)
Filed 10/08/2020 - Case Ongoing
Governor of New York
Speech and Religious Freedom
Presidential/Gubernatorial Authority
PR-NY-0010
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: A group of Orthodox Jewish synagogues brought this lawsuit against the Governor of New York on October 8, 2020, alleging that the governor's restrictions on gatherings in light of surges in COVID-19 cases violated the Free Exercise Clause. After the district court denied plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction, they ... [view]
23 A. Philip Randolph Institute of Ohio v. Larose
1:20-cv-01908 (N.D. Ohio)
Filed 10/08/2020 - Case Ongoing
no defendants on record
Election/Voting Rights
VR-OH-0086
Coding In Process
Summary not yet on record [view]
24 Texas LULAC v. Abbott
1:20-cv-1006 (W.D. Tex.)
Filed 10/01/2020 - Case Ongoing
no defendants on record
Election/Voting Rights
VR-TX-0451
Coding In Process
Summary not yet on record [view]
25 Arctic Village Council v. Meyer
3AN-20-07858Cl (State Court)
Filed 09/08/2020 - Closed
State of Alaska
Election/Voting Rights
VR-AK-0013
Coding Complete
COVID-19 Summary: This case, initially being tracked by the Stanford-MIT Healthy Elections Project, was filed by Arctic Village Council, the League of Women Voters, and individual Alaska voters with underlying health conditions. The plaintiffs sought an order enjoining the State of ... [view]
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