How To Protect Your Civil RightsWritten on December 18, 2014
Over the past few months, the media has devoted a good deal of coverage to several high profile stories involving deaths. Part of that coverage has centered on alleged civil rights violations.
Civil rights investigations are different than criminal cases. A particular case may be both criminally investigated as well as explored for any civil rights violations. If someone is found not guilty in a criminal case, or not indicted by a grand jury, federal civil rights charges could still follow without double jeopardy applying.
Civil rights are the rights of an individual to be treated fairly in all situations, including: education, employment, and housing. A person can expect to be treated fairly and not be discriminated against or mistreated based on gender, race, religion, or nationality.
There are also criminal civil rights violations. Some types of situations typically involve the threat or use of force. Examples include:
- Hate crimes
- Migrant worker exploitation
- Law enforcement misconduct
- Religion interference or property damage
- Interfering with health care through violence or threats
- Threats based on race
- Gender harassment
Under most circumstances, before filing a civil rights lawsuit, you must file a complaint with the appropriate government agency. For some high profile cases, the federal government may launch an investigation on its own, but those instances are rare.
If a person feels they have been discriminated against by an employer based on their gender, for instance, a claim could be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Individuals who believe they have been turned down housing based on their race could choose to file a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development. In almost all situations, before a lawsuit can be brought to court, a complaint must be filed and investigated.
Navigating the criminal justice system on your own can be a challenging task. Filing a civil rights lawsuit and complaint is equally, if not more, challenging. It’s not something you want to do without first speaking to an attorney. There is a tremendous burden of proof that must be met in civil rights cases. You don’t want to try and do it without effective legal counsel that will be by your side through every step of this complex process.
If you feel your civil rights have been violated and are considering filing a complaint, make The Silverbach Group your first call. We are here for questions and consultation. Your rights are among the most valuable things you have. Let us help you protect them! You can reach us at (770) 635-0334.