Additional terms may be found at the

1983 ACTION ([section] 1983, SECTION 1983). A federal law that made relief, including money damages, available to those whose constitutional rights had been violated by an actor acting under State authority.

AFFIRM. An act by one court to agree with and confirm a lower court's decision. A judgment or decree that is not affirmed is either remanded (sent back to the lower court) or reversed.

APPEAL. Apply to a higher court for a reversal of the decision of a lower court.

DELIBERATE INDIFFERENCE. The prevailing standard for establishing a variety of civil rights claims in the jail or prison context. The term first applied to inadequate medical care, but courts have applied the standard in other areas as well, including municipal liability, in-custody suicides, and failure to protect. Deliberate indifference is the conscious or reckless disregard of the consequences of one's acts or omissions.

EXHAUSTION. The doctrine of exhaustion of remedies prevents a litigant from seeking a remedy in a new court or jurisdiction until all claims or remedies have been pursued as fully as possible in the original one. The Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) requires plaintiffs to exhaust grievance options at their facility before filing a suit.

MONELL. A decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in Monell vs. The Department of Social Sennces of the City of New York ruled that a local government is a "person" subject to suit under Section 1983.

PRISON LITIGATION REFORM ACT (PLRA). A U.S. federal law that was enacted in 1996 in response to a significant increase in prisoner litigation in the federal courts. PLRA was designed to decrease the incidence of litigation within the court system. The...

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