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KL Wins Constitutional Class Certification for Discrimination Against Non-DC Non-Profits

Klafter Lesser has won class certification in an unusual class action brought against Washington D.C. for un-Constitutionally discriminating against non-profit organizations that do not have offices in D.C.  Under D.C. law, a non-profit located in the District is exempt from paying sales and hotel taxes in the District.  But non-profits from anywhere else who hold conventions in D.C. do have to pay sales and hotel taxes.  On behalf of the American Philosophical Association and the American Anthropological Association, KL asserts that this discrimination in favor of its D.C.-based non-profits violated the Commerce Cause of the Constitution and, with co-counsel Kellog, Hansen, Todd, Figel & Frederick, has been fighting for two years to get the claims in the case certified as a class action.  On April 30,  2021, the Superior Court of the District of Columbia agreed with KL and certified the case as a class action on behalf of all non-profits that are not located in D.C. and who held conventions at or otherwise paid sales and hotel taxes at all the major DC hotels and who continue to do so until the constitutionality of the D.C. law at issue is determined.  American Philosophical Association v. District of Columbia, Case No. 2019 CVT 000003.  The full decision can be read here.

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