Civil Assault and Battery

Assault and battery are closely related intentional torts that are distinguished from one another by the presence or absence of physical contact.

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Attorney Fees

Attorney fees are an incidental, generally necessary, but usually expensive cost of litigation, unless attorneys agree to provide representation voluntarily.

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Authority Theory

Authority is a ubiquitous term, used commonly to refer to those who can command obedience and have decision-making power, either as individuals or as officials acting on behalf of agencies.

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Bureaucracy

Public bureaucracies were created historically to implement legislation through delegated power in all types of political regimes, whether democratic, monarchic, republican, or dictatorial.

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Civil Law

In the U.S. legal system, civil law is the branch of law concerning disputes between individuals and/or organizations, where a judgment can be the requirement of action, the cessation of action, and/or monetary payments from one party to another.

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Civil Rights Movement

The civil rights movement, a decades-long effort to win equitable treatment for African Americans and other groups underrepresented in American society, is described chronologically in this entry.

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Common Law

The evolution of the common law began when Henry II established a system of English royal courts in 1166. These courts employed juries and were presided over by circuit-riding judges.

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Consent Decree

Consent decrees in educational disputes are negotiated equitable agreements between plaintiffs and defendants in elementary and secondary school settings and in higher education.

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Contracts

Contracts are legally enforceable agreements between two or more parties to perform obligations resulting from bargained-for exchanges.

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Copyright

Copyrights are intangible rights granted by the federal Copyright Act to authors or creators of original artistic or literary works that can be fixed in a tangible means of expression such as hard copies, electronic files, videos, or audio recordings.

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Critical Theory

Critical theory views the law as a tool of social, political, and economic reform oriented toward addressing social injustices.

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Defamation

Defamation is an injurious statement about a person’s reputation; it usually involves a defamer, who imputes questionable character or inappropriate conduct about another, the defamed party. 

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Deposition

A deposition is a method of discovery that is used to gather or obtain facts and information that may be relevant to a pending lawsuit.

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Disparate Impact

Actions that negatively affect individuals in particular groups as defined by race, color, religion, sex, or national origin are referred to as having a disparate or disproportionate impact. The concept of disparate impact flows from Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the large amount of litigation it fostered.

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Dual and Unitary Systems

Based on precedent from the U.S. Supreme Court, dual systems of public education were those that operated separate and distinct schools for students who were White and children who were African American or other minorities such as Mexican American.

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Due Process

The U.S. Constitution guarantees every person within the jurisdiction of the United States protection against arbitrary government action through the Due Process Clause.

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Due Process Hearing

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) gives parents of a student with disabilities the right to request a due process hearing on any matter concerning the delivery of a free appropriate public education (FAPE), such as the identification, evaluation, and placement of the child.

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Educational Malpractice

Beginning in the 1970s, parents sought to render school boards, teachers, and other educational staff members liable for the inability of their children to perform well in school, charging a variety of school officials with educational malpractice in disputes over pedagogical methods and student outcomes.

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Equal Protection Analysis

The Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution declares that no state may “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” 

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Fair Use

According to Section 107 of the federal Copyright Act, fair use of a copyrighted work, “for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright.”

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False Imprisonment

False imprisonment, sometimes called false arrest, is a tort that protects an individual’s freedom from improper restraint and includes more than simple incarceration.

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Federalism and the Tenth Amendment

The term federalism refers to the division of power and responsibility between the states and the national government.

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Fraud

Educational institutions can be either the victims of fraud or, through their administration or governing boards, the perpetrators of fraud.

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Hearsay

Hearsay testimony is secondhand evidence; in hearsay, witnesses talk not about what they know personally, but about what they have been told by other persons.

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Immunity

Immunity, an affirmative defense to tort claims against governmental entities, is generally identified as being one of three types: sovereign, qualified, or absolute.

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In Loco Parentis

Parents send their child to school to spend the day in the company of educators. This simple everyday act removes their children from the physical control of their parents.

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Intellectual Property

Intellectual property includes literary or artistic works, inventions, business methods, industrial processes, logos, and product designs.

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Interrogatory

An interrogatory is a method of discovery that is used to gather or obtain facts and information that may be relevant to a pending suit.

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