civil rights


Corporeal is a thing that has a physical existence and is capable of being seen and touched. In reference to law, “corporeal” is used primarily in the context of property. Louisiana has a statute that defines corporeal and incorporeal. As per...

De Facto Segregation

During racial integration efforts in schools during the 1960’s, “de facto segregation” was a term used to describe a situation in which legislation did not overtly segregate students by race, but nevertheless school segregation continued.


A reason why the plaintiff or prosecutor should not prevail on a cause of action or demand for relief. A defense can either allege a failure to state a claim, or affirm the existence of a claim and present additional reasons that prevent the plaintiff...

Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)

The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was a federal law passed by the 104th United States Congress intended to define and protect the institution of marriage. This law specifically defined marriage as the union of one man and one woman...


Different treatment for similarly situated parties, especially when no legitimate reason appears to exist. An employer who rejects all male applicants and hires the first female applicant with the same qualifications might be discriminating on the...

Disparate Impact

A test or other tool used for selection that, though appearing neutral, actually has an adverse effect on a particular protected class of individuals.

Disparate Treatment

When one particular set individuals whose members are of a protected class is treated differently than others.

Disproportionate Impact

See Disparate Impact

Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857)

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary

The U.S. Supreme Court decision in which the Court ruled that African Americans, whether enslaved or free, were not citizens of the United States and therefore did not have the right to sue in federal...

Driving while Black

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law DictionarySlang for police profiling of drivers who deviate from the ethnic standards of a community -- for example, regularly stopping African American drivers in a Caucasian neighborhood, or stopping Mexican...