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Client Alert: First Amendment Victory in U.S. Supreme Court: Unconstitutional to Require Charities to Disclose Donors’ Identities

July 02, 2021
Firm Memoranda

On July 1, 2021, Quinn Emanuel won a seminal First Amendment victory in the United States Supreme Court, protecting the rights of all nonprofits and their donors.   The Court adopted our arguments as to why and how the First Amendment prohibits government from making sweeping, unjustified demands that charities disclose the identities of their individual donors.  According to the Court’s decision in Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta, it is facially unconstitutional for the State of California to demand that charities report the names and addresses of their major donors.  Chief Justice Roberts’ opinion for the Court is the most significant decision vindicating First Amendment associational freedom in almost 60 years.

This decision is the capstone for over six years of litigation on behalf of the Foundation, a 501(c)(3) that has been registered in California for years without adverse incident.  From first drafting the complaint in 2014, to obtaining a preliminary injunction, to prevailing in a bench trial, and then fighting for this outcome during years of appeals, the firm built the right record to yield this ultimate victory.

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If you have any questions about the issues addressed in this memorandum, or if you would like a copy of any of the materials mentioned in it, please do not hesitate to reach out to:

Derek Shaffer
Phone: +1 202-538-8123

William Burck
Phone: +1 202-538-8120

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