Constitutional & Civil Rights Law

The Declaration of Independence declares the birthright of every American:  life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  These fundamental rights are enshrined in the Constitution and in various federal, state, and local statutes, which guarantee to each of us certain freedoms and protections that may not be infringed by government agencies or private institutions.

At The Warshawsky Law Firm, we are dedicated to protecting and promoting these vital constitutional and civil rights that lie at the heart of a free and democratic society.  If your civil rights have been violated, it is imperative that you consult with us as soon as possible, so we can work with you to preserve your legal rights and explore all of your options for obtaining justice, compensation, and other appropriate relief.  
The Warshawsky Law Firm represents clients in the full range of civil rights matters arising under the United States Constitution (including the FirstSecondFourth, and Eighth Amendments) and federal, state, and local laws, including the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the New York State Civil Rights Law, the New York State Human Rights Law, and the New York City Human Rights Law.

The specific issues we handle include:

  • excessive force / police brutality
  • false arrest / false imprisonment
  • malicious prosecution
  • wrongful convictions
  • freedom of speech
  • sexual harassment
  • assault and battery
  • defamation, slander, libel
  • right to privacy
  • unauthorized commercial use of picture, name, or voice
  • discrimination by stores and businesses
  • Freedom of Information (FOIA / FOIL)
  • legal challenges to government action
  • NY CPLR Article 78 proceedings
  • college disciplinary proceedings
  • criminal defense (select cases only)

Even if you don’t see your issue listed here, please contact us if you believe your civil rights have been violated. 

Steven M. Warshawsky, Esq. and Tomasz J. Piotrowski, Esq. consult with a client

Representing victims of police abuse:

We have represented numerous victims of police abuse, including in false arrest, excessive force, unlawful search, and malicious prosecution cases.  Police abuse falls disproportionately on the poor and minorities, but our clients include persons of all races, neighborhoods, and socioeconomic levels.  Our lawyers are very knowledgeable, experienced, and skillful in handling these cases. 

Representing criminal defendants:

Although not a regular part of our practice, in select cases we defend clients who have been accused of crimes.  Usually, but not necessarily, this is in connection with a potential civil rights case.  We have obtained dismissals, ACDs, and “not guilty” verdicts for our criminal defense clients.

Representing college students accused of sexual misconduct:

In recent years, there has been an explosion of sexual misconduct cases at our nation’s colleges and universities.  While there is considerable debate about the true incidence of sexual assault among college students, in their zeal to address this problem, colleges and universities have trampled on the rights – and ruined the futures – of many students who have been wrongly accused and “convicted” (by the schools, not the courts) of sexual misconduct.

Is it possible for a college student wrongly accused of sexual misconduct to “fight back”?  Yes, but the issue is very complicated.  So far, most of the courts that have ruled on these lawsuits have sided with the schools, but there have been some rulings favorable to the students.  Legally, this is an evolving area, with different causes of action (due process, equal protection, Title IX, breach of contract, defamation, and others) being pursued to accomplish the same goals:  to exonerate the student of wrongdoing, to restore his academic standing, and to obtain compensation for the harms done to him.

At The Warshawsky Law Firm we are available to represent college students who have been wrongly accused of sexual misconduct.  We can assist with pending student disciplinary proceedings and we can represent students in court to challenge the unfair outcomes in these cases.  Because these cases are legally complex and loaded with political agendas, it is important to retain experienced, sophisticated counsel for these matters. 

Representing individuals and businesses accused of civil rights violations:

At The Warshawsky Law Firm, our civil rights practice includes defensive cases in which we represent individuals and businesses who have been accused of violating another person’s civil rights, for example, businesses who are accused of discriminating against customers or individuals who are accused of defamation.  If you or your business has been sued for violating another person’s rights, we may be able to help you.  

FAQS:  For more information, please see our Civil Rights FAQs.  

If you or your company needs a qualified civil rights lawyer, please contact The Warshawsky Law Firm today.