What Is A Civil Rights Injury Case?

The concept of civil rights is broadly defined in the United States as the rights of individuals afforded to them by the U.S. Constitution and federal laws. There is a particular emphasis placed on notions of freedom, equality, and freedom from unlawful discrimination inherent in the concept of civil rights.

When an individual’s civil rights are infringed upon, this turn of events is generally referred to as a civil rights violation. Civil rights violations can occur in virtually any sphere of American life. For example, if someone is denied access to a hotel’s services as a result of their race, that is a civil rights violation. If someone is discriminated against in the workplace as a result of their disability, this is a civil rights violation. If someone is denied their right to vote due to intimidation and voter suppression activities, this is a civil rights violation.

Sometimes, in the course of suffering a civil rights violation, an individual also suffers injury at the hands of those who are responsible for the civil rights violation in question. Under such circumstances, the injury victim may be entitled to damages if they opt to file a civil rights injury case. Essentially, a civil rights injury case is born out of a scenario in which a civil rights violation and a personal injury scenario collide.

The Personal Injury “Side” of a Civil Rights Injury Case

As an experienced civil rights injury lawyer in Oregon at Andersen Morse & Linthorst can explain in greater detail, to be successful, a civil rights injury case must generally meet the elements required for an ordinary personal injury suit. With that said, is important to speak with an attorney about your situation before making any assumptions about whether you have grounds upon which to file a lawsuit. Alternative legal criteria may apply to your situation.

Most of the time, a successful personal injury suit must prove three primary legal elements. First, it must be established that the defendant in the case owed the victim a duty of care under the law. In a civil rights injury case, that duty of care will stem from rights enshrined in the Constitution of federal law. Second, it must be proven that the defendant’s intentionally harmful conduct, negligence, or recklessness caused them to breach that duty. Finally, it must be proven that the victim’s injuries were directly caused by that breach.