On May 3, 2011, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Utah, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), and the law firm of Munger, Tolles, & Olsen filed a class action lawsuit in federal district court challenging Utah’s HB 497. HB 497 gives law enforcement the authority to demand “papers” demonstrating citizenship or immigration status during traffic stops, much like Arizona’s SB 1070. The lawsuit charged that HB 497 is unconstitutional in that it violates the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, Fourth Amendment, Equal Protection Clause, and the right to travel. The federal district court promptly blocked implementation of the law. In an Order issued Tuesday, February 21, 2012, Judge Clark Waddoups announced that he will wait to issue a decision on our request for a Preliminary Injunction (“PI”) in UCLR v. Herbert (“UCLR”), Utah’s HB 497 “Show Me Your Papers” lawsuit, until the Supreme Court issues its decision in an Arizona case that raises similar legal questions to some of the issues raised here in Utah. On June 18, 2014, the court issued a decision blocking several key provisions of the law that would have allowed police to arrest certain potentially deportable immigrants and that would have criminalized everyday activities, such as driving an undocumented immigrant to the store. The order also severely limited implementation of several provisions of the law.

PRESS RELEASE:Federal District Court Blocks Several Provisions of HB 497, Strictly Limits Enforcement of “Show Me Your Papers” Provision (6/19/14) >>

Memorandum Decision and Order (PDF) >> 6/18/14

Frequently Asked Questions about Utah’s HB 497, “Show Me Your Papers” Law - Updated 10/11 >> 

PRESS RELEASE: ACLU And NILC File Lawsuit Challenging Utah “Show Me Your Papers” Law" 05/03/11 >> 

La ACLU y la NILC entablan demanda impugnando la Ley “Muéstreme sus papeles” de Utah >> 

More information about this case, including the full complaint can be found online at >>
Statement by the Embassy of Mexico on the ACLU lawsuit filed against H.B. 497 in Utah >> 
Declaracion De La Embajada De Mexico Sobre Demanda Contra La Ley HB 497 de Utah >>

Date filed

May 3, 2011