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Friday, April 15, 2016

Strip Clubs Entitled to Damages Due to Unconstitutional Licensing Ordinance

Happy Friday!  Today's case involves a strip club suing the City of Milwaukee for damages it claims it is entitled to for lost profits because of the City's now repealed licensing ordinance. Six Star Holdings, LLC v. City of Milwaukee (7th Cir., April 13, 2016).

In 2012, Milwaukee had a licensing program in place for adult businesses, including strip clubs. Two companies challenged the constitutionality of the licensing ordinance, seeking injunctive relief and damages. The City subsequently repealed the ordinances, but the damages claims in the case continued. The lower court ruled in favor of the two companies and awarded damages. The City appealed to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld the ruling against the City. The court rejected the City's argument that one of the companies did not have standing to challenge the ordinance because it had not applied for or been rejected a license to operate an adult business. The court found standing where the company suffered an injury because the company refrained from protected speech in response to the City's unconstitutional ordinances. 

Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf


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