National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association v. Black

National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association v. Black

HBPA sues to overturn unconstitutional HISA law

For 125 years, state governments successfully regulated horse racing, deciding on issues of equine safety and overseeing compliance with the established rules.

In 2015, special interests began pushing the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA), a bill that would illegally create a private national board of unelected members that would usurp state governments, nationalizing the horseracing industry and giving them the authority to create federal law governing the industry.

For five years there was little movement on the bill until 2020 when a few opportunistic lawmakers saw their chance and inserted the bill into the December COVID relief bill, knowing that those who vehemently opposed HISA would not vote against helping suffering Americans — or it would go largely unnoticed.

The passage of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act should alarm all Americans, regardless of their interest in horseracing. It not only was passed by manipulating legitimate relief efforts, and puts the livelihoods of thousands of working class horsemen in the hands of a few — the authority HISA grants to a private entity is illegal.

The newly created Authority’s powers include the right to rule on equine medication and safety, suspending owners and trainers for alleged violations of Authority rules, and issuing subpoenas and commencing civil actions in federal court.

Attorneys at the Liberty Justice Center are representing Thoroughbred horse owners and trainers in a federal lawsuit to stop the new law, pointing out HISA unlawfully grants the Authority government powers despite the U.S. Constitution and subsequent foundational U.S. Supreme Court decisions declaring that Congress cannot delegate its legislative authority.

Lead Attorney

Reilly Stephens

Staff Attorney

Jeffrey Jennings

Staff Attorney

To schedule an interview, please contact [email protected]


Attorneys from the Liberty Justice Center filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas against the newly created “Authority” and the Federal Trade Commissioners. The Liberty Justice Center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public-interest litigation center that represents clients at no charge and was founded to fight against political privilege.


Press Release 03/15/2021

Motion for Preliminary Injunction 03/15/2021

Appendix for Motion for Preliminary Injunction 03/15/2021

First Amended Complaint 04/02/2021

Plaintiff's First Supplemental Corporate Disclosure Statement 04/07/2021

Appendix in Support of Plaintiffs' Brief 04/30/2021

Motion to Dismiss 04/30/2021

Motion for Summary Judgement 04/30/2021

Motion to Dismiss and Brief 04/30/2021

American Quarter Horse Association Amicus Brief 05/13/2021

Sen. McConnell Amicus Brief 05/14/2021

North American Association of Racetrack Veterinarians Amicus Brief 05/14/2021

Brief for Amicus Curiae 05/17/2021

Response Brief 05/28/2021

Brief in Support of Defendants 05/28/2021

Appendix of Defendant's Support of Opposition of Motion for Partial Summary Judgment 05/28/2021

Brief in Support of Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment 05/28/2021

Defendants' Opposition 05/28/2021

Memorandum, Exhibit A 05/28/2021

Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss by Defendants 06/18/2021

Plaintiff's Reply for Motion for Partial Summary Judgment 06/18/2021

Reply Brief 06/18/2021

Plaintiff's Notice of Supplemental Authority 08/30/2021

Notice of Supplemental Authority, BST Holdings 11/30/2021

Plaintiffs' Notice of Activity 01/18/2022

Exhibits to Notice of Rulemaking (A) 01/18/2022

Texas Motion to Intervene 01/27/2022

Response to Notice of Activity 01/28/2022

State of Texas Intervention Motion 02/17/2022

Plaintiffs' Notice of Supplemental Authority 03/08/2022

Exhibit A - FTC Order Approving Racetrack Safety Rules 03/08/2022

Opinion 03/31/2022

Memorandum Opinion and Order 03/31/2022

Final Judgment 04/19/2022

Notice of Appeal 04/19/2022

Motion to Amend Judgment 04/22/2022

First Amended Complaint 04/22/2022

Amended Final Judgment 04/22/2022

New Final Judgment 04/25/2022

Plaintiffs-Appellants' Opening Brief 06/27/2022

Opening Brief Appendix 06/27/2022

Reply Brief 08/17/2022

Press Release 11/18/2022

Fifth Circuit Decision 11/18/2022

Rehearing Denial 01/31/2023

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