Case: Parsons v. City of Jacksonville

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA | Florida state trial court

Filed Date: March 1, 2017

Case Ongoing

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This is a case about Jacksonville, Florida, its residents, and its businesses against the city's 2017 ordinance that added sexual orientation and gender identity as protected categories under Florida's Human Rights Ordinance ("HRO"). On March 1, 2017, a private Jacksonville citizen filed this lawsuit against Jacksonville in the Florida Fourth Circuit Court for Duval County. The plaintiff sued Jacksonville under Florida law claiming that the city deprived their right to adequate notice and that …

This is a case about Jacksonville, Florida, its residents, and its businesses against the city's 2017 ordinance that added sexual orientation and gender identity as protected categories under Florida's Human Rights Ordinance ("HRO"). On March 1, 2017, a private Jacksonville citizen filed this lawsuit against Jacksonville in the Florida Fourth Circuit Court for Duval County. The plaintiff sued Jacksonville under Florida law claiming that the city deprived their right to adequate notice and that they had suffered or would suffer injuries to their rights of privacy, religious conscience, and business interests under the HRO.  Represented by the nonprofit organization Liberty Counsel, the plaintiff sought declaratory judgment and a permanent injunction invalidating HRO. The plaintiff claimed that Jacksonville had failed to notify the plaintiff of the proposed adoption of the HRO, and the HRO was therefore void.

On March 22, 2017, the city filed a motion to dismiss for lack of standing. The next day, on March 23, the plaintiff filed a motion for summary judgment.

A couple weeks later, on April 4, 2017, the city filed a motion for disqualification of the trial court judge, Judge Adrian Soud. Citing Florida's judicial rules, the city argued that it had a "reasonable fear that it [would] not receive a fair and impartial hearing or trial" because of a close relationship between Judge Soud's mother and plaintiff's counsel. On April 24, 2017, the court denied the motion, which it deemed both untimely and "legally insufficient." 2017 Fla. Cir. LEXIS 12619. However, to avoid the appearance of impropriety, Judge Soud voluntarily recused himself in an order on the same day. The case was then assigned to Judge Michael Weatherby.

On May 22, 2017, the city filed an amended motion to dismiss without prejudice, and the court granted it on July 7, 2017. In its opinion, the court held that the plaintiff failed to plead facts that showed a "bona fide, actual, present, adverse interest between the parties." 2017 Fla. Cir. LEXIS 12580.

Following the motion to dismiss, the plaintiff filed an amended complaint on August 8, 2017. The amended complaint added four plaintiffs and dropped the request for injunctive relief. The city filed a motion to dismiss with prejudice on August 18, 2017. The court granted the motion on December 20, 2017. Even with the newly added plaintiffs and their alleged facts, the court found no basis for which a declaratory judgment could be needed. 2017 WL 11542438, 2017 Fla. Cir. LEXIS 12587.

The plaintiffs appealed to the Florida First District Court of Appeals (No. 1D18-284) on January 18, 2018. 

On May 1, 2020, the appellate court reversed and remanded the trial court's decision, holding that the plaintiffs did have standing. The appellate court held that challenges to ordinances under Florida law did not require a specific injury-in-fact. In addition, the court also held that the City's recodification of the ordinance didn't moot the plaintiffs' claims, nor did it cure the failure to notify the plaintiffs of the new law. 295 So. 3d 892.

As of September 24, 2022, this case is pending trial.

Summary Authors

Calvin Kim (9/24/2022)

People


Judge(s)

Kelsey, Susan L (Florida)

Mahon, Mark H (Florida)

Attorney for Plaintiff

Gannam, Roger K. (Florida)

Mihet, Horatio G. (Florida)

Attorney for Defendant

Feiser, Craig D. (Florida)

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Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA

Florida State Trial Docket

May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020

Docket

1D18-284

[Docket]

Florida state appellate court

May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020

Docket

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA

Complaint for Declaratory and Temporary and Permanent Injunctive Relief

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

Complaint

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA

Order of Voluntary Recusal

April 24, 2017

April 24, 2017

Order/Opinion

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA

Order Granting Defendant City of Jacksonville's Amended Motion to Dismiss Without Prejudice

Florida state appellate court

July 12, 2017

July 12, 2017

Order/Opinion

16-2017-CA-001263-XXXX-MA

Amended Complaint for Declaratory Relief

Aug. 8, 2017

Aug. 8, 2017

Complaint

1D18-284

On appeal from the Circuit Court for Duval County

Florida state appellate court

May 1, 2020

May 1, 2020

Order/Opinion

Docket

Last updated Jan. 28, 2024, 3:46 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link

COVER SHEET

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

COMPLAINT

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

SUMMONS ISSUED CITY OF JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

OTHER CIRCUIT CIVIL – OTHER entered 03/01/2017.

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

CASE FEES PAID: $411.00 ON RECEIPT NUMBER 2868985

March 1, 2017

March 1, 2017

SUMMONS RETURNED INDICATING SERVICE (COPORATE) CITY OF JACKSONVILLE FL 03/02/2017 @ 4:10PM (MARIE STONE -LEGAL ASSIST. )

March 3, 2017

March 3, 2017

MOTION TO DISMISS (DEFT'S)

March 22, 2017

March 22, 2017

REQUEST PLAINTIFF'S REQUEST TO TAKE JUDICIAL NOTICE

March 23, 2017

March 23, 2017

MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT.

March 23, 2017

March 23, 2017

NOTICE OF HEARING ON 5/8/2017 @ 10:15 A.M. IN COURTROOM 740 OF THE DUVAL COUNTY COURTHOUSE

March 24, 2017

March 24, 2017

MOTION FOR DISQUALIFICATION OF TRIAL JUDGE

April 3, 2017

April 3, 2017

RESPONSE IN OPPOSITION TO DEFT'S MOTION FOR DISQUALIFICATION OF TRIAL JUDGE (PLTF'S)

April 4, 2017

April 4, 2017

REQUEST TO PRODUCE (DEFENDNAT, CITY OF JACKSONVILLE'S FIRST)

April 5, 2017

April 5, 2017

ORDER DENYING DEF MOTION FOR DISQUALIFICATION OF TRIAL JUDGE

April 24, 2017

April 24, 2017

ORDER OF VOLUNTARY RECUSAL

April 24, 2017

April 24, 2017

ORDER OF REASSIGNMENT: TO SENIOR JUDGE MICHAEL WEATHERBY

April 26, 2017

April 26, 2017

NOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF 1ST REQUEST TO PRODUCE TO PLTF/ATTY FOR DEFT

April 27, 2017

April 27, 2017

NOTICE OF HEARING 06/019/2017 11:00AM HON MICHAEL R. WEATHERBY SENIOR CIRCUIT JUDGE ROOM 731

May 4, 2017

May 4, 2017

MOTION TO DISMISS (CITY OF JACKSONVILLE'S AMENDED)

May 22, 2017

May 22, 2017

NOTICE OF HEARING AMENDED, 06/26/2017 11:00AM HON MICHAEL R. WEATHERBY ROOM 731

May 23, 2017

May 23, 2017

NOTICE OF HEARING ON 6/9/2017 @ 11:00 A.M. IN HEARING ROOM 731 MOTION: DEFT'S AMENDED MOTION TO DISMISS

May 23, 2017

May 23, 2017

ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO DISMISS (CITY OF JACKSONVILLE AMENDED) WITHOUT PREJUDICE- PLTF HAS 20 DAYS TO FILE AMENDED COMPLAINT

July 12, 2017

July 12, 2017

MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME (AGREED) TO FILE AMENDED COMPLAINT/ATTYS FOR PLTF

July 25, 2017

July 25, 2017

ORDER GRANTING PLTFF'S AGREED MTN FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO FILE AMENDED COMPLAINT: BY 08-08-17

Aug. 1, 2017

Aug. 1, 2017

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF

Aug. 8, 2017

Aug. 8, 2017

MOTION TO DISMISS CITY OF JACKSONVILLE'S /WITH PREJUDICE AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF

Aug. 18, 2017

Aug. 18, 2017

NOTICE OF HEARING 11/3/17 @ 11:00AM RM. 731/COUNSEL FOR DEFT COJ

Oct. 12, 2017

Oct. 12, 2017

ORDER GRANTING DEFT CITY OF JACKSONVILLE'S MTN TO DISMISS W/PREJ AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF

Dec. 21, 2017

Dec. 21, 2017

NOTICE OF APPEAL BOOK 18257 PAGE 886-891

Jan. 18, 2018

Jan. 18, 2018

CASE FEES PAID: $103.00 ON RECEIPT NUMBER 3102564

Jan. 22, 2018

Jan. 22, 2018

DCA ACKNOWLEDGMENT RECEIPT 1D18-0284

Jan. 22, 2018

Jan. 22, 2018

DESIGNATION TO REPORTER AND REPORTER'S ACKNOWLEDGMENT(PLTF.'S)

Jan. 29, 2018

Jan. 29, 2018

DCA ORDER DIRECTING APPELLANT TO PAY SUM OF $300.00 FILING FEE OR FILE INDIGENT STATUS

Jan. 30, 2018

Jan. 30, 2018

REPORTER’S ACKNOWLEDGEMENT (PLTF.S,APELLANTS')

Jan. 31, 2018

Jan. 31, 2018

TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDING ON NOV 3 2017 @ 11:00AM-12:14PM

Feb. 27, 2018

Feb. 27, 2018

APPEAL PREP FEE BILL

March 5, 2018

March 5, 2018

TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDING 6-9-17 @ 11:00AM- 12:16PM ROOM 731

March 8, 2018

March 8, 2018

CASE FEES PAID: $100.50 ON RECEIPT NUMBER 3146942

March 16, 2018

March 16, 2018

INDEX & RECORD OF APPEAL

March 16, 2018

March 16, 2018

RECORD ON APPEAL E-FILED TO DCA entered 03/16/2018.

March 16, 2018

March 16, 2018

MANDATE FROM APPELLATE COURT, REVERSED AND REMANDED, 1D18-0284 BOOK 19230 PAGE 864-874

May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020

Case Details

State / Territory: Florida

Case Type(s):

Speech and Religious Freedom

Key Dates

Filing Date: March 1, 2017

Case Ongoing: Yes

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Private citizens of Jacksonville, Florida

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

City of Jacksonville (Jacksonville), City

Case Details

Causes of Action:

State law

Available Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: None Yet / None

Nature of Relief:

None yet

Source of Relief:

None yet

Issues

General/Misc.:

Classification / placement

Discrimination Basis:

Gender identity

Sexual orientation