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Leslie Brodie, The Leslie Brodie Report, Uncategorized

Supreme Court Justices Mull Issue of Qualified Immunity for Private Attorneys Conducting Investigations for Public Clients

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The U. S. Supreme Court recently heard arguments in the case Filarsky v. Delia (appealed from 9th Cir. 9/9/10) involving a private employment attorney, Steve Filarsky, retained by the City of Rialto to conduct an internal affairs investigation. Filarsky caused the City to order respondent firefighter Delia to consent to a warrantless search of his home. Delia subsequently brought a civil rights claim against both the City and Filarsky alleging, among other things, a violation of the Fourth Amendment. The district court granted Filarsky’s and the City’s motion to dismiss based on qualified immunity, but the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed in part, ruling that Filarsky, a private attorney, could not enjoy such immunity. Other circuit courts have granted qualified immunity to private lawyers retained by the government, and the Supreme Court must now resolve the circuit courts’ split.

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About Leslie Brodie

Leslie Brodie is a reporter, writer, blogger, activist, and a religious leader in the community.

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