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In another United States Supreme Court victory for GMSR, the Court pronounces important limitations on Section 1983 claims against municipalities
December 3, 2010

Los Angeles County v. Humphries (2010) 562 U.S. ____; 131 S.Ct. 447 (United States Supreme Court). Tim Coates, Alison Turner and Lillie Hsu obtained a unanimous decision from the United States Supreme Court for the County of Los Angeles in Los Angeles County v. Humphries (2010) 562 U.S. ____; 131 S.Ct. 447. In a critical decision for cities and counties, the Supreme Court agreed with Los Angeles County that a municipality cannot be subjected to declaratory or injunctive relief in a civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. Section 1983 unless the plaintiff establishes that an injury was inflicted as a result of a policy, custom or practice fairly attributable to the local public entity – the same causation standard that the Supreme Court applies to claims for damages. Mere involvement of a municipal employee is not enough: Relief is not appropriate unless the plaintiff points to some local statute, regulation or widespread practice that local policy makers should know will result in a constitutional violation.

This was Tim’s third case in the U.S. Supreme Court, and GMSR’s fourth victory in the high court in four years, with Tim having prevailed in Van de Kamp v. Goldstein (2009) 556 U.S. __, 129 S.Ct. 855 and GMSR partner Kent Richland successfully representing Anna Nicole Smith in Marshall v. Marshall (2006) 547 U.S. 293 and the City of Ontario in City of Ontario v. Quon (2010) 560 U.S. __, 130 S.Ct. 2619.

More about the case here.

Los Angeles County v. Humphries (2010) 562 U.S. ____; 131 S.Ct. 447

Timothy T. Coates
Alison M. Turner

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