DiFrancesco v. Fox

Plaintiffs allege that defendant’s practice of suspending drivers’ licenses indefinitely until all court fines and fees are paid regardless of ability to pay violates equal protection and due process.  Driving during a suspension exposes people to a mandatory jail sentence of between two days and six months and an additional fine. Driving on a suspended driver’s license also adds one year to the period of suspension.


Defendants filed a motion to dismiss on statute of limitations ground; Motion denied without prejudice (following determination of class certification).

On January 9, 2019, Plaintiff’s Amended Motion for Class Certification was denied. On May 15, 2019, the court stayed all proceedings for thirty days in light of the Montana Legislature enacting, and Governor Bullock signing into law, HB217, which ended the practice of debt-based driver’s license suspensions. On June 14, 2019, the parties filed a Stipulation of Dismissal of Plaintiffs’ action.

You can find a detailed summary and case documents via the Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse.

42 U.S.C. § 1983 (alleging due process and equal protection violations)
2:17-cv-00066-SEH (D. Mont.)
August 2017
Equal Justice Under Law and Attorneys, Morrison, Sherwood, Wilson & Dcola, PLLP