Lambda Legal Files Emergency Motion in Indiana

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Lambda Legal urges court to lift stay for Niki and Amy as Niki battles stage IV ovarian cancer.

Date

Date: 
06/30/2014

(Evansville, IN, June 30, 2014) — Lambda Legal filed papers with the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals asking the court on an emergency basis to recognize the marriage of Niki Quasney and Amy Sandler while the case proceeds, because Niki battles Stage IV ovarian cancer. The stay was issued last week and prevents further marriages of same-sex couples in Indiana until the appeals court issues its decision in Baskin v. Bogan, Lambda Legal’s lawsuit seeking the freedom to marry for all Hoosiers.

After the trial court granted emergency relief to Niki and Amy in April, requiring the State to respect Niki and Amy’s marriage while the lawsuit proceeds, the Attorney General appealed that order, and Lambda Legal launched an online petition to enlist the public. Thousands of Hoosiers have already signed. Visit: http://www.lambdalegal.org/petition/indiana-attorney-general

The emergency relief granted by the trial court is no longer in effect; the stay issued by the Appeals Court last week applies even to couples facing terminal illness, who may not live to see the conclusion of the State’s appeal.

“There is no justification whatsoever for depriving this family of the dignity, comfort, and protections of a legally recognized marriage during this already agonizingly difficult time,” said Camilla Taylor, Marriage Project Director for Lambda Legal. “We ask Attorney General Zoeller not to oppose this motion. This is one family in all of Indiana that is undergoing tremendous stress while they courageously fight Ms. Quasney’s stage four ovarian cancer. Their marriage doesn’t harm anyone in Indiana, it simply protects them and their children.”

Baskin v. Bogan, was filed on March 10, 2014 in the United States District Court in the Southern District of Indiana. Lambda Legal later filed a motion seeking immediate relief for Ms. Quasney, Ms. Sandler and their two children ages 3 and 1. Almost five years ago, Ms. Quasney was diagnosed with stage four ovarian cancer, having more than 100 tumors removed surgically in 2009, and has since gone through years of chemotherapy. They have a civil union in Illinois and were married in Massachusetts in 2013 but need their marriage legally recognized in Indiana to receive the full protections that every other married family in Indiana receives.

Read our papers asking the Seventh Circuit to lift its stay for Amy and Niki: http://www.lambdalegal.org/in-court/legal-docs/baskin_in_20140630_emerge...

Sign the petition urging the attorney general to abandon the appeal: http://www.lambdalegal.org/petition/indiana-attorney-general

Read more about the families and the entire case here: http://www.lambdalegal.org/take-action/love-unites-us/indiana

Joining Lambda Legal Marriage Project Director Camilla Taylor in arguing the case are Lambda Legal Staff Attorney Paul Castillo, Barbara Baird of the Law Office of Barbara J. Baird in Indianapolis, Indiana, and Jordan Heinz, Brent Ray, Dmitriy Tishyevich, and Melanie MacKay of Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

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Contact Info

Erik Roldan Cell: 312-545-8140; Email: eroldan@lambdalegal.org