U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning has awarded $222, 695 in attorneys’ fees and $2,008.08 in costs to the plaintiffs in the case against the Rowan County Clerk who denied them marriage licenses.
In civil rights cases in which the plaintiffs prevail against the government, federal law provides that the plaintiffs are entitled to recover their reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs, in part, to deter government officials from committing future violations of individuals’ rights.
William Sharp, legal director ACLU of Kentucky, had this reaction:
“We are pleased with today’s ruling, and we hope this serves as a reminder to Kentucky officials that willful violations of individuals’ civil liberties, such as what occurred here, will not only be challenged but will also prove costly.” He added, “It is unfortunate that Kentucky taxpayers will likely bear the financial burden of the unlawful actions and litigation strategies of an elected official, but those same voters are free to take that information into account at the ballot box.”
A copy of the court’s order can be found here.