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Attorney General
Karl A. Racine
Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia

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Civil Litigation Division

The attorneys, paralegals and support staff of the Civil Litigation Division (CLD) of the Office of the Attorney General defend the District of Columbia, its officials and employees in a broad spectrum of civil litigation. CLD has primary responsibility for the representation of the District of Columbia in hundreds of civil lawsuits that seek monetary damages from the District.  In those cases, CLD attorneys appear in the local and the federal courts before judges and juries in the District of Columbia. From time to time, CLD attorneys also are called upon appear on behalf of the District of Columbia in the neighboring jurisdictions of Virginia and Maryland.

CLD defends all personal injury tort lawsuits against the District of Columbia and its employees, including both negligence and intentional tort claims such as motor vehicle accidents, slip and falls, and medical malpractice. The Division represents the District in constitutional and common law suits involving District agencies such as the Metropolitan Police Department and the Department of Corrections, which operates the District of Columbia Jail. Actions brought under the District of Columbia Freedom of Information Act are handled by CLD attorneys. 

The Division is responsible for defending the District in employment and individual civil rights matters brought pursuant to federal and local law, including, for example, the First and Fifth Amendments of the United States Constitution, Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the District of Columbia Human Rights Act, and the District of Columbia Whistleblower Protection Act. The Division also litigates civil cases in several specialized areas such as special education cases filed against the DC Public Schools and cases in Small Claims Court.

The Deputy Attorney General and Assistant Deputy Attorney General oversee the Division with the assistance of four Section Chiefs and the work of CLD’s Assistant Attorneys General.

CLD attorneys seek to obtain a fair resolution of all civil litigation brought against the District of Columbia, whether by settlement or litigation. The success of the Division depends not only on its attorneys, but also on its paralegals and support staff as well as CLD’s counterpart staff and attorneys in each District agency.  All Division personnel are committed to serving the best interests of the District of Columbia.