BELLEVUE, WA – The Second Amendment Foundation confirmed today its federal lawsuit against the Illinois State Police that compelled the agency to hire additional personnel in order to clear a backlog of applications for Firearm Owner Identification (FOID) cards because the issue has been resolved, and dismissed. The case was known as Marszalek v. Kelly.
Joining SAF in the legal action, which was filed in July 2020, were the Illinois State Rifle Association and several individual plaintiffs. The lawsuit was also supported by the Goldwater Institute of Phoenix, Ariz. Plaintiffs were represented by attorneys David Sigale of Wheaton, Ill., Gregory Bedell of Chicago, Ill., and Timothy Sandedur with the Goldwater Institute in Phoenix.
“The issue was quite simple and we’re glad it is resolved,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “In 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, restrictions were put in place in Illinois that caused the Illinois State Police to completely fail in its statutory responsibility to process applications for FOID cards in 30 days. However, the state was taking up to six months, and sometimes more, to complete this process, and the result was Illinois citizens were being denied the exercise of their Second Amendment rights.”
At the time, the State Police said pandemic restrictions prevented it from hiring additional staff to process applications while the agency updated its system. Thanks to pressure from SAF, ISRA and the court, the State Police cleared the application backlog and acknowledged its obligation to speed up the process and comply with the time frame.
“We’re satisfied with the outcome,” Gottlieb said, “and we’re especially pleased at the support from the Goldwater Institute.”
While this lawsuit is dismissed, there are other legal challenges in Illinois which are still pending.