- Follow the “Rules of Evidence” when submitting evidence to them.
- Tort law in nationwide so all 50 states have to file a tort first, if you want money, this will need to be sent to your states “attorney general”
- Some states have online tort filing options google it!
- Put in the amount you want to be compensated, higher than $75,000.00.
- As long as you wait 60 days after filing then you will not have to have the actual letter to file your lawsuit just state under jurisdiction that you filed a tort 60 days ago.
- Even if your case with CPS is closed leave the kids name out. Refer to them as “child” if needed.
- Mark number 440 “Other civil rights complaint”
- On this form you do not have to make a separate one for each defendant you can use the same one for all. Mark Federal Question.
- Write Section 1983 civil rights violation somewhere in either of the boxes that is the core you want to always document on all forms.
- Put cover sheet, summons, complaint, and fee waiver in one envelope, mail it via ups so you can get a signature that the federal court clerk received it, with your $400 money order.
- Wait for the clerk to mail the summons back to you before you serve them
A § 1983 lawsuit is a legal remedy available to individuals
pursuant to a federal statute that waives the government’s immunity
from suit for civil rights violations. Congress permits individuals to
file suit against the government under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 to seek
redress for violations of constitutional rights committed by
government officials.96 Section 1983 of Title 42 provides:
Every person who, under color of . . . State or Territory . . . subjects
. . . any citizen of the United States . . . to the deprivation of any
rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and
laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law . . . .97
Before filing suit against CPS, attorneys representing families should
identify whether the parent or child’s constitutional rights have been
violated, whether the Fourth or Fourteenth Amendment protections
were violated, and which CPS conduct violated the individual’s
rights. Even where there are constitutional violations, families may
be barred from recovery if the court accepts the defense that the state
actors qualify for qualified immunity. Therefore, attorneys should
plead that CPS violated family members’ constitutional violations in a
manner that gives family members the best opportunity to recover
compensation in light of anticipated qualified immunity
Qualified immunity is an affirmative defense to a civil action that
may be asserted against public officials engaging in a discretionary
function of their employment.98 Public official defendants are
immune from § 1983 lawsuits “[u]nless the plaintiff’s allegations
state a claim of violation of clearly established law.”99 Qualified
immunity balances two important competing interests: “the need to
hold public officials accountable when they exercise power
irresponsibly and the need to shield officials from harassment,
distraction, and liability when they perform their duties
reasonably.”100 The Supreme Court has established a two-pronged
test for determining whether public official defendants are immune
from suit for wrongful conduct: (1) whether the plaintiff alleges a
violation of a constitutional right and (2) whether the plaintiff’s right
was clearly established at the time.101 A “clearly established” right is
one that is “sufficiently clear that a reasonable official would
understand that what he is doing violates that right.
Although qualified immunity is technically an affirmative defense,
in the Ninth Circuit, the plaintiff bears the burden of demonstrating
that the right allegedly violated was clearly established at the time of
the incident.103 If the court determines that government officials are
entitled to qualified immunity, the damages claims against the
officials can be dismissed without a court ever deciding the merits of
the suit.104 In such an instance, the case would be dismissed before a
family is able to tell their story to a jury. The Court’s two-pronged
test is intended to avoid a practical problem of qualified immunity:
that the legal standards will be unclear governing whether official
conduct violated a clearly established right
(a)Requisite features of State planIn order for a State to be eligible for payments under this part, it shall have a plan approved by the Secretary which—
(1)provides for foster care maintenance payments in accordance with section 672 of this title, adoption assistance in accordance with section 673 of this title, and, at the option of the State, services or programs specified in subsection (e)(1) of this section for children who are candidates for foster care or who are pregnant or parenting foster youth and the parents or kin caregivers of the children, in accordance with the requirements of that subsection;
(2)provides that the State agency responsible for administering the program authorized by subpart 1 of part B of this subchapter shall administer, or supervise the administration of, the program authorized by this part;
(3)provides that the plan shall be in effect in all political subdivisions of the State, and, if administered by them, be mandatory upon them;
(4)provides that the State shall assure that the programs at the local level assisted under this part will be coordinated with the programs at the State or local level assisted under parts A and B of this subchapter, under division A  of subchapter XX of this chapter, and under any other appropriate provision of Federal law;
(5)provides that the State will, in the administration of its programs under this part, use such methods relating to the establishment and maintenance of personnel standards on a merit basis as are found by the Secretary to be necessary for the proper and efficient operation of the programs, except that the Secretary shall exercise no authority with respect to the selection, tenure of office, or compensation of any individual employed in accordance with such methods;
(6)provides that the State agency referred to in paragraph (2) (hereinafter in this part referred to as the “State agency”) will make such reports, in such form and containing such information as the Secretary may from time to time require, and comply with such provisions as the Secretary may from time to time find necessary to assure the correctness and verification of such reports;
(7)provides that the State agency will monitor and conduct periodic evaluations of activities carried out under this part;
(8)subject to subsection (c), provides safeguards which restrict the use of or disclosure of information concerning individuals assisted under the State plan to purposes directly connected with (A) the administration of the plan of the State approved under this part, the plan or program of the State under part A, B, or D of this subchapter or under subchapter I, V, X, XIV, XVI (as in effect in Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands), XIX, or XX, the program established by subchapter II, or the supplemental security income program established by subchapter XVI, (B) any investigation, prosecution, or criminal or civil proceeding, conducted in connection with the administration of any such plan or program, (C) the administration of any other Federal or federally assisted program which provides assistance, in cash or in kind, or services, directly to individuals on the basis of need, (D) any audit or similar activity conducted in connection with the administration of any such plan or program by any governmental agency which is authorized by law to conduct such audit or activity, and (E) reporting and providing information pursuant to paragraph (9) to appropriate authorities with respect to known or suspected child abuse or neglect; and the safeguards so provided shall prohibit disclosure, to any committee or legislative body (other than an agency referred to in clause (D) with respect to an activity referred to in such clause), of any information which identifies by name or address any such applicant or recipient; except that nothing contained herein shall preclude a State from providing standards which restrict disclosures to purposes more limited than those specified herein, or which, in the case of adoptions, prevent disclosure entirely;
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