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Fojo Law Files Lawsuit Challenging Three More School Districts’ Face Mask Requirements

This morning, we filed another lawsuit challenging three New Hampshire school districts’ requirements that students wear face masks while in school, riding the bus, or participating in extracurricular activities. This lawsuit comes after we filed one against the Hollis/Brookline School District (School Administrative Unit #41) and a second one against the Bedford School District (School Administrative Unit #25) in late May.  Like those lawsuits, this one was filed on behalf of 17 sets of parents and their children residing in Atkinson, Danville, Epping, Londonderry, Plaistow, and Sandown, and challenging each school district’s requirement that students wear face masks or coverings while in school, riding the bus, or participating in extracurricular activities because they violate a New Hampshire statute (RSA 126-U:4) that prohibits schools from requiring restraints on children that restrict their breathing (including any restraint that involves covering the face or body with anything) or that restrict the normal function of a portion of their bodies. The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard last year, the action we filed last year challenging the City of Nashua’s face mask ordinance, and the action we filed challenging Governor Sununu’s closure of New Hampshire schools, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining each school district from enforcing its face mask requirement.  The motion can be found here. The lawsuit alleges that requiring children to wear face masks or coverings contradicts one or more of the prohibitions contained in RSA 126-U:4.  Wearing a mask requires a child to cover his or her face with certain material (whether a surgical mask or a cloth mask), mechanically restricts a child’s breathing...

Fojo Law Files Two Lawsuits Challenging NH School District Face Mask Requirements

Yesterday evening, we filed two lawsuits challenging two New Hampshire school districts’ requirements that students wear face masks while in school, riding the bus, or participating in extracurricular activities. The lawsuits — one was filed against the Hollis/Brookline School District (School Administrative Unit #41), and the other was filed against the Bedford School District (School Administrative Unit #25) — were filed on behalf of several parents and their children residing in Hollis and Brookline, and Bedford, respectively, and challenge each school district’s requirement that students wear face masks or coverings while in school, riding the bus, or participating in extracurricular activities because they violate a New Hampshire statute (RSA 126-U:4) that prohibits schools from requiring restraints on children that restrict their breathing (including any restraint that involves covering the face or body with anything) or that restrict the normal function of a portion of their bodies. Each lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard last year, the action we filed last year challenging the City of Nashua’s face mask ordinance, and the action we filed challenging Governor Sununu’s closure of New Hampshire schools, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining each school district from enforcing its face mask requirement.  The motion in the Hollis/Brookline lawsuit can be found here, and the motion in the Bedford lawsuit can be found here. Each lawsuit alleges that requiring children to wear face masks or coverings contradicts one or more of the prohibitions contained in RSA 126-U:4.  Wearing a mask requires a child to cover his or her face with certain material (whether a surgical mask or...

Fojo Law Amends Keene Face Mask Lawsuit to Challenge State-Wide Face Mask Mandate

On September 18, 2020, we filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire challenging the City of Keene’s enactment of an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face masks and Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more. That lawsuit, filed on behalf of three Keene business owners (Ian B. Freeman, Malaise Lindenfeld, and Aria DiMezzo), challenges (1) the City of Keene’s enactment of an ordinance (O-2020-09-A) requiring individuals who enter any business, who are present in any outdoor area serviced by a business, or who enter or are present in the common areas of any business, or in the common areas of any residential building with three or more units, to wear face masks or coverings; and (2) Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, and the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s order closing schools and implementing remote instruction, also included a request for an order enjoining the Governor and the City from enforcing the order and the ordinance, respectively. Today, we filed an amended complaint in that lawsuit.  In addition to some minor changes addressing arguments raised by the Defendants in their recent motions to dismiss, it adds a new claim challenging Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #74, which requires people to wear face masks or coverings when in public spaces without physical distancing (the so-called state-wide face mask mandate), and Emergency Order #81 which extended...

Fojo Law Files Appeal in New Hampshire Supreme Court in Rivard Lawsuit Against Sununu Over Shutdown

Yesterday, our law firm filed a notice of appeal with the New Hampshire Supreme Court in Mary Rivard’s lawsuit against Governor Christopher T. Sununu over his executive orders extending his “state of emergency” declaration he issued earlier this year in response to the Coronavirus.  Ms. Rivard had requested an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining Governor Sununu’s emergency measures.  Ms. Rivard also amended her complaint to allege an additional claim: that the emergency powers statutes (RSA 4:45 and 4:47) under which Governor Sununu issued and renewed the “state of emergency” declaration are an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power in violation of The New Hampshire Constitution. After a hearing on June 9, 2020, the Merrimack County Superior Court denied Ms. Rivard’s request for an injunction and dismissed the case.  We filed a motion to reconsider that order in early August 2020, highlighting many of the errors in the Court’s decision.  The Court denied that motion last month (one word: “Denied.”). In light of recent decisions from Pennsylvania and Michigan within the last two weeks that invalided shutdown orders in those states, we appealed the Court’s decision.  In New Hampshire, an appeal of a trial court decision on the merits goes directly to the New Hampshire Supreme Court. In Ms. Rivard’s lawsuit, we primarily requested that the Court conclude Governor Sununu’s orders are void because he lacked the authority under the applicable statutes to continue renewing New Hampshire’s “state of emergency.” Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 were designed to “slow the spread” of the Coronavirus so New Hampshire’s healthcare system would not be overwhelmed.  Over a month later (and particularly...

Fojo Law Files Lawsuit Challenging Keene’s Face Mask Ordinance and Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order Requiring Face Masks for Gatherings of 100 or More People, Requests Order Enjoining Both Measures

This morning, we filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire challenging the City of Keene’s recent enactment of an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face masks and Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of three Keene business owners (Ian B. Freeman, Malaise Lindenfeld, and Aria DiMezzo), challenges (1) the City of Keene’s enactment of an ordinance (O-2020-09-A) requiring individuals who enter any business, who are present in any outdoor area serviced by a business, or who enter or are present in the common areas of any business, or in the common areas of any residential building with three or more units, to wear face masks or coverings; and (2) Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #63, which requires individuals to wear face masks in certain gatherings of 100 people or more.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, and the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s order closing schools and implementing remote instruction, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the Governor and the City from enforcing the order and the ordinance, respectively. More specifically, the lawsuit addresses two main concerns. First, the purpose for, and supposed “emergency” underlying, Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 was that New Hampshire needed to “slow the spread” of the Coronavirus so the state’s healthcare system would not be overwhelmed.  Over several months later, there is no question New Hampshire’s hospitals never reached capacity, and New Hampshire’s curve...

Federal Appeals Court Schedules Oral Argument in Appeal of District Court’s Denial of New York Life’s Motion to Compel Arbitration of Former Agent’s $14 Million Lawsuit

Yesterday, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit scheduled oral argument in an appeal by New York Life (and two related companies) of the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration filed by New York Life in a lawsuit filed by Ketler Bossé, a former soliciting agent and district agent for the company. The parties filed their appellate briefs earlier this year and then, at the First Circuit’s request, supplemental briefs in July.  Oral argument is scheduled for September 24, 2020, at 10 a.m.  It will be conducted via Zoom due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Factual Background Mr. Bossé engaged Fojo Law and filed a Complaint in the District Court in January 2019, asserting various federal and state employment-related claims against New York Life, including claims for discrimination and retaliation under 42 U.S.C. § 1981, conspiracy to interfere with civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1985, and breach of contract under 42 U.S.C. § 1981, and various state law claims, including claims for breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, fraud, wrongful termination, tortious interference with economic advantage, violation of New Hampshire’s Consumer Protection Act (RSA 358-A), breach of fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment, quantum meruit, conversion, and defamation. Mr. Bossé alleged that, despite excelling as an agent for New York Life and the many accolades he earned during his 14-year affiliation with the company, New York Life terminated him because he is black and then defamed him and appropriated his clients. He alleged he is owed over $14 million in lost commissions, residual commissions,...

Hearing Scheduled for June 18, 2020 in Lawsuit Challenging Nashua’s Face Mask Ordinance and Governor Sununu’s State of Emergency Declaration

This afternoon, the Hillsborough County Superior Court scheduled a hearing for June 18, 2020, at 9 a.m., on our client’s lawsuit challenging Governor Sununu’s “state of emergency” declaration and the City of Nashua’s recent enactment of an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face masks.  Like the school closure lawsuit, this action contains another troubling revelation about government transparency and whether local governments are following the rule of law during this “pandemic.” The lawsuit, filed on behalf of a Nashua resident, challenges (1) Governor Christopher T. Sununu’s Executive Orders 2020-08 and 2020-09, which extended New Hampshire’s declaration of a state of emergency until June 5, 2020 (totaling 84 days); and (2) and the City of Nashua’s enactment of an ordinance (O-20-018) requiring individuals who enter any business, who are present in any outdoor area serviced by a business, or who enter or are present in the communal spaces of any commercial or residential building with two or more units to wear face masks or coverings.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, and the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s order closing schools and implementing remote instruction, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the Governor and the City from enforcing the orders and the ordinance, respectively. More specifically, the lawsuit addresses two main concerns, the second of which is more troubling and was referenced above. First, this lawsuit includes the same principal argument underlying the Rivard and school closure lawsuits: the purpose for, and supposed “emergency” underlying, Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 was that New Hampshire needed to “slow the spread” of the Coronavirus so the...

Fojo Law Files Lawsuit Challenging Nashua’s Face Mask Ordinance and Governor Sununu’s State of Emergency Declaration, Requests Emergency Order Striking Both Measures

This morning, we filed the firm’s third lawsuit challenging Governor Sununu’s “state of emergency” declaration, and also challenging the City of Nashua’s recent enactment of an ordinance requiring individuals to wear face masks.  Like the school closure lawsuit, this action contains another troubling revelation about government transparency and whether local governments are following the rule of law during this “pandemic.” The lawsuit, filed on behalf of a Nashua resident, challenges (1) Governor Christopher T. Sununu’s Executive Orders 2020-08 and 2020-09, which extended New Hampshire’s state of emergency until June 5, 2020 (totaling 84 days); and (2) and the City of Nashua’s enactment of an ordinance (O-20-018) requiring individuals who enter any business, who are present in any outdoor area serviced by a business, or who enter or are present in the communal spaces of any commercial or residential building with two or more units to wear face masks or coverings.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, and the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s order closing schools and implementing remote instruction, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the Governor and the City from enforcing the orders and the ordinance, respectively. Contact us for a FREE consultation! More specifically, the lawsuit addresses two main concerns, the second of which is more troubling and was referenced above. First, this lawsuit includes the same principal argument underlying the Rivard and school closure lawsuits: the purpose for, and supposed “emergency” underlying, Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 was that New Hampshire needed to “slow the spread” of the Coronavirus so the state’s healthcare...

Hearing Scheduled for June 2, 2020 in Lawsuit Challenging Governor Sununu’s Orders Closing Schools

This morning, the Rockingham County Superior Court scheduled a hearing for next Tuesday, June 2, 2020, at 1:30 p.m. on our clients’ emergency motion for a temporary restraining order against Governor Christopher T. Sununu’s Executive Orders 2020-08 and 2020-09, which extended New Hampshire’s state of emergency until June 5, 2020 (totaling 84 days); (2) Governor Sununu’s Emergency Orders #1, #19, and #32, and the New Hampshire Department of Education’s “emergency” amendment to one of its internal rules, ED 306.18(a)(7), all of which collectively canceled the rest of the 2019-2020 school year for all New Hampshire public schools, and substituted in its place an inadequate system of remote instruction that is failing to meet the needs of students across the state; and (3) the Salem School District’s implementation of remote instruction pursuant to the directives above. The Honorable Andrew R. Schulman denied the emergency request, for the time being, because he prefers Governor Sununu, the Department, and the Salem School District be provided with notice and an opportunity to be heard before the Court rules.  (Judge Schulman labeled the request for a ruling without notice (known as an “ex parte” request) “wholly inappropriate.”  The Defendants’ actions, however, in changing a Department rule overnight without notice to the public, and then waiting six days to post it online, is what is truly “inappropriate.”). The June 2 hearing takes place one week earlier than the hearing in the Rivard lawsuit. Late last week, we filed the firm’s second lawsuit challenging Governor Sununu’s shutdown orders, and this action contains a potentially explosive revelation that calls into question the transparency of our government officials and whether they...

Fojo Law Files Lawsuit Challenging Governor Sununu’s Order Closing Schools and Implementing Remote Instruction, Requests Emergency Order to Re-Open Schools

This morning, we filed the firm’s second lawsuit challenging Governor Sununu’s shutdown orders, and this action contains a potentially explosive revelation that calls into question the transparency of our government officials and whether they have any desire to follow the rule of law during this “pandemic.” The lawsuit, on behalf of a father and his child (of Salem, New Hampshire), challenges (1) Governor Christopher T. Sununu’s Executive Orders 2020-08 and 2020-09, which extended New Hampshire’s state of emergency until June 5, 2020 (totaling 84 days); (2) Governor Sununu’s Emergency Orders #1, #19, and #32, and the New Hampshire Department of Education’s “emergency” amendment to one of its internal rules, ED 306.18(a)(7), all of which collectively canceled the rest of the 2019-2020 school year for all New Hampshire public schools, and substituted in its place an inadequate system of remote instruction that is failing to meet the needs of students across the state; and (3) the Salem School District’s implementation of remote instruction pursuant to the directives above.  The lawsuit, like the first action we filed on behalf of Mary Rivard, also includes an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the Governor, the Department of Education, and the Salem School District from enforcing these orders and rules. Contact us for a FREE consultation! More specifically, the lawsuit addresses two main concerns, the second of which is more troubling and was referenced above. First, this lawsuit includes the same principal argument underlying the Rivard lawsuit: the purpose for, and supposed “emergency” underlying, Governor Sununu’s original shutdown orders in March 2020 was that New Hampshire needed to “slow the spread” of the...