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NetChoice v. Reyes

Key Takeaways:
  • NetChoice is asking the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah—Salt Lake Division to halt SB 194 from going into effect while our case, NetChoice v. Reyes, moves through the legal system.
  • This Invasion of Privacy Act seriously harms Utahns by violating their constitutional rights, compromising their data security, taking away their rights to run their families as they deem appropriate, and undermining the state’s vibrant innovation economy.
  • This law violates the First Amendment by conditioning Utahns’ right to share and receive information online on their willingness to hand over their most sensitive, personal data.  It also disregards existing federal law that ensures frivolous lawsuits aren’t weaponized to curtail free speech, violating the Supremacy Clause.
What's At Stake
  • Hinging one's ability to access and publish information online to whether they are willing to upload private records, regardless of age, violates the First Amendment.
  • In passing these laws, the state also ignores existing federal law that ensures frivolous lawsuits aren’t weaponized to curtail free speech, violating the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution.
  • Tech services will be required by law to store user data for an unspecified period of time and to make it available to the state. Forcing them to hold such private information will make them a prime target for cybercriminals.
  • Families should determine how their own children and teen use internet services, but this law hands the State unconstitutional power that usurps the rights of parents.
Case Brief

Case Status: NetChoice updated complaint filed against the State

Latest Update: May 3, 2024

Attorneys:

  • Steve Lehotsky
  • Scott Keller
  • Jeremy Evan Maltz
  • Todd Disher
  • Joshua P. Morrow


Firms:
Lehotsky Keller Cohn, LLP

Timeline
  • District Court
    12/18/2023 NetChoice Files Initial Complaint
  • District Court
    12/20/2023 NetChoice Files Preliminary Injunction
  • District Court
    5/3/2024 NetChoice Files Updated Complaint

In 2023, the Utah legislature and Governor Spencer Cox took up the important issue of kids online safety. While their effort was well-intentioned, the path they chose violates the constitutional rights of all Utahns, their children and their businesses, compromises their data security and strips away their parental rights. Unfortunately, the state

NetChoice sued the State of Utah to stop this package from going into effect on March 1, 2024. After we launched our initial lawsuit, the state legislature reconvened and unfortunately doubled down with a new unconstitutional bill, SB 194, which hampers Utahns’ privacy and security and infringes their First Amendment rights.

We have already won successful challenges against California, Arkansas, and Ohio for trying to impose similar restrictions.  

It didn’t have to be this way. NetChoice has been repeatedly speaking with Utah lawmakers about these problems since the original laws were introduced in the legislature. Other states, like Florida and Virginia, passed bills in 2023 that embrace a positive approach for digital literacy. Unfortunately, Utah’s government took a path that seizes control of the online experience from parents, disregards the importance of education, sidelines the state’s vibrant creator economy, compromises data security and violates constitutional rights. 

Utahns do not have to choose between their constitutional rights, parental rights, cybersecurity, kids’ safety or economic engine.

With NetChoice v. Reyes, we will fight to ensure that Utah’s Invasion of Privacy Acts are halted. NetChoice looks forward to seeing the State in court.

Read NetChoice’s updated complaint, filed May 3, 2024, here.

Chris Marchese – Director of the NetChoice Litigation Center

Link to bio

Nicole Saad Bembridge – Associate Director of Litigation

Link to bio

Paul Taske – Associate Director of Litigation

Link to bio

Court Filings

NetChoice Complaint, filed December 18, 2023, in the United States District Court for the District of Utah—Salt Lake Division

NetChoice Request for a Preliminary Injunction, filed December 20, 2023, in the United States District Court for the District of Utah—Salt Lake Division.

NetChoice updated complaint, filed May 3, 2024, in the United States District Court for the District of Utah—Salt Lake Division.