Civil Rights Claims: Los Angeles & Nationwide
The times we live in today are more awakened to civil rights issues now that almost any other period in the last half-century. The rights of people to their sexual orientation and sexual identity have been heard in the courts, and the rights of people of color are being heard in the streets. Now more than ever the eyes of the American people are on the actions of government officials and employees and how they respect or deny individual civil rights.
Black Lives Matter and other groups are shining the light on civil rights violations committed by individual police officers, based not only on their individual behavior but on a system that allows such abuses to occur. Black and brown people are profiled, stopped, arrested, convicted and jailed in numbers far out of proportion to their representation in the population.
What can be scarier than to have your rights violated by the very people sworn to protect you? Where do you turn for justice when your fate is in the hands and at the mercy of the government committing the abuses? California civil rights lawyer James A. Morris, Jr., will stand up for your rights and protect them. He’ll make sure your voice is heard, that the individuals and agencies that violated your rights are held accountable to you and the public, and that you are fairly compensated for the harm inflicted on you.
In Los Angeles and throughout all of Southern California, call the Morris Law Firm if you believe your local police department, sheriff’s department or other government agency violated your civil rights. Our firm stands ready and willing to take at a look at your case and help you pursue justice for violations of your legal and constitutional rights, including claims involving all of the following:
- Racial profiling
- Violation of First Amendment rights to free speech and assembly, including the right to engage in peaceful protest
- Governmental abuses of power
- Police brutality
- Excessive force
- Prosecutorial misconduct
- Malicious prosecution
Federal Law Allows Claims for Money Damages in Civil Rights Cases
In Title 42 of the United States Code, section 1983 authorizes civil legal action for a deprivation of rights. This law, commonly referred to as Section 1983, allows an individual to sue a “state actor” for depriving the person of their legal or constitutional rights. A state actor includes a government official or employee, such as a police officer, or anyone “acting under color of law,” meaning they presented themselves as having official governmental authority.
In a Section 1983 claim, the abuser and his or her employer (the government agency) can be liable to the injured party for all harm caused. If successful on a claim, either through settlement or jury verdict, the injured party can recover money damages for harm such as medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and property damage. Punitive damages can also be appropriate if the officer’s conduct was motivated by evil intent or showed a reckless or callous indifference to the injured party’s federally protected rights. Punitive damages are a money award meant to punish the wrongdoer and can be many times greater than the actual harm suffered by the injured party.
Persons whose rights are violated do not have suffer actual physical harm to file a 1983 claim. They can still hold the government liable and accountable for violating their rights and win a judgment ranging from nominal damages to a large punitive damages award where appropriate.
Whether taking your case to the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice or going straight to federal court, attorney James Morris has the trial skills to take on the biggest agencies or most difficult cases and prevail. He and his team at Morris Law firm have the experience, resources and dedication to stand up for you, let your voice be heard, and get justice on your behalf.
California Protects People From Civil Rights Violations by Private Actors
Section 1983 is a powerful tool against state actors acting under color of law, but private citizens and businesses can also violate your civil rights by refusing to serve you or otherwise treating you worse than others based on your race, religion, sexual orientation or other characteristics. California, through its Unruh Civil Rights Act, prohibits discrimination against people based on their sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, citizenship, primary language, or immigration status. This law makes it clear that members of these protected classes are “entitled to the full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges, or services in all business establishments of every kind whatsoever.”
The Unruh Civil Rights Act allows you to bring a claim against private businesses as well as government agencies that unlawfully discriminate or violate your civil rights. Morris Law Firm invites you to call for a free consultation when you feel your civil rights have been violated. We can evaluate your case and determine your best options for filing a claim in state or federal court or with the appropriate government agency. If we accept your case, we’ll handle your matter on a contingency fee basis, meaning you won’t have to pay us any money upfront. We’ll advance all costs of litigation and only charge a fee if we are successful on your behalf.
Los Angeles Civil Rights Lawyer Fighting for You
If you feel that a government actor or local business has violated your civil rights in Los Angeles or anywhere in Southern California, call the Morris Law Firm at 747-283-1144 to schedule your free consultation with a dedicated and resourceful civil rights lawyer.