Section 1983 in the State and Federal Courts (previously Section 1983 Litigation in State Courts) presents a clear methodology for addressing the complex procedural and remedial issues arising in Section 1983 cases that may be filed in both state and federal courts. Each step of litigation is supported by references to state and federal cases that identify underlying legal principles and strategies.
This treatise includes:
- Comprehensive coverage of federal and state court decisions, offering definitions, explanations, case citations, checklists, and tactical insights.
- Practical advice on choosing the right court, state remedial policies, judge and jury selection, pleading requirements, state justiciability policies, administrative exhaustion requirements, immunities, damages, wrongful death policies, removal, and attorney fees.
- Up-to-date state and federal caselaw and statutory developments.
This title is cited in the state and federal courts and by the U.S. Supreme Court in its recognition that Section 1983 litigation takes place in courts in virtually every state (Howlett by and through Howlet v. Rose, 490 U.S. 356, 378 n.20 (1990)).
This revised edition is noteworthy for many reasons, including:
- The revised edition has been renamed to better reflect its content. When first published in 1988 the book was titled Section 1983 Litigation in State Courts, but it has always covered the litigation of §1983 cases in both state and federal courts. The new title makes the dual focus explicit.
- The book retains its choice of forum focus, seeking to provide a greater understanding of how §1983 actions are treated in state and federal courts.
- The publication of this revised edition provided an opportunity to thoroughly review the book and to restructure several chapters to better reflect the state of the law.
- This revised edition eliminates the detailed discussions of issues that have been resolved by decisions of the United Supreme Court. Thus, the book no longer explores in depth whether states are “persons” under §1983 and whether state court defendants can bring immediate appeals of denials of qualified immunity as of right.
- The revised edition expands the coverage of the “other” surviving Reconstruction-era civil rights acts, while recognizing that the growth of the modern civil rights actions (that is, Titles VI, VII and VIII; the ADA; and the Rehabilitation Act), though conceptually related to §1983, are better covered in books and treatises that focus directly on them.
For a more detailed discussion of the revised edition, please see the Author’s Introduction to the 2021-2022 Edition and Preface.