In 2012, the Montana Immigrant Justice Alliance (“MIJA”) filed a lawsuit in Montana’s First Judicial District Court to challenge LR-121, Montana’s anti-immigrant law. In March 2013, after conducting depositions and investigating the issues, we asked Judge Sherlock for summary judgment on grounds that LR-121 is preempted by federal law. Summary judgment is a mechanism to bypass a trial, if there are no genuine issues of fact in dispute, and judgment can be entered as a matter of law. The Montana Attorney General also asked the Judge for judgment in its favor.
We have completed extensive briefing. In all, there were four lengthy briefs submitted:
The Montana AG’s response, and cross-motion for summary judgment.
The Montana AG’s final reply in support of their own motion.
Yesterday, we had a hearing before Judge Sherlock on both parties’ motions for summary judgment. The AP wrote a story about the hearing. The hearing went well, and we will await a decision as soon as Judge Sherlock can get to it. We believe we have proven that LR-121 is preempted by federal law.
Shahid Haque-Hausrath of the Border Crossing Law Firm, P.C. is representing the Montana Immigrant Justice Alliance (“MIJA”) on a pro bono basis in its lawsuit to challenge Montana’s anti-immigrant law. You can read more about LR-121 and what it does here.