the Constitution

Civil Forfeiture

Overview

Civil forfeiture occurs when the government seizes property under suspicion of its involvement in illegal activity. Such a proceeding is conducted in rem, or against the property itself, rather than in personam, or against the owner of the...

Civil Liberties

Civil liberties are rights guaranteed by the Constitution (primarily from the First Amendment). They have been described as natural rights which are inherent to each person. While they are commonly referred to as "rights," civil...

Civil Rights

Overview

A civil right is an enforceable right or privilege, which if interfered with by another gives rise to an action for injury.

Discrimination occurs when the civil rights of an individual are denied or interfered with because of the...

Civil Rights Act of 1964

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law DictionaryA federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including pregnancy), and religion in employment, education, and access to public facilities and public...

Civil Union

A civil union is a marriage-like relationship. It is often between members of the same sex.

Beginning of Civil Union

Vermont was the first state in the US to recognize civil unions. The state supreme court ruled in Baker v. State of...

Civil Union Partners

Civil union partners are partners who are in a civil union relationship. The exact level of rights, benefits, obligations, and responsibilities of civil union partners varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. For example, some jurisdictions allow...

Clear and Present Danger

The clear and present danger test originated in Schenck v. the United States. The test says that the printed or spoken word may not be the subject of previous restraint or subsequent punishment unless its expression creates a clear and present danger...

Clinton v. City of New York (1998)

Definition

A Supreme Court case that struck down the Line Item Veto Act because it gave the executive the unilateral authority to amend a law without having to go through the legislative process. The Line Item Veto Act, intended by Congress to...

Cloture

Procedural step of ending debate on a proposal, and holding a vote to determine if it will pass. In the U.S. Senate, a three-fifths majority is usually required to invoke cloture, which translates to 60 votes if no vacant seasts exist. If debating a...

Codification

The process through which laws that have been passed by Congress are ordered into subject categories within the U.S. Code.

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