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Fourteenth Amendment

Overview

The Fourteenth Amendment contains a number of important concepts, most famously state action, privileges & immunities, citizenship, due process, and equal protection—all of which are contained in Section One.  However, the Fourteenth Amendment contains four other sections.  Section Two deals with the apportionment of representatives to Congress.  Section Three forbids a

 

Multidistrict Litigation

A federal case management procedure in which a federal panel transfers several (or many) complex civil cases involving one or more common questions of fact to one federal district court (called the MDL court). The MDL court coordinates and oversees pretrial proceedings, signs off on settlement of some cases, and dismisses others. All remaining cases are sent back to the original court of filing for trial. MDL works well when plaintiffs nationwide file lawsuits against the same defendants, alleging the same issues. Types of litigation that lend themselves to MDL include cases against pharmaceutical drug companies, lawsuits based on an airplane crash, securities fraud cases, and some employment cases.

Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act

More commonly referred to as the Hate Crimes Act or the Matthew Shepard Act, this federal law gives the U.S. Department of Justice the power to investigate and prosecute defendants who selected their crime victim based on race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. The law, passed in October 2009, is named for hate crime victims Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr.

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