Good Government and Civil Rights Litigation

On behalf of a wide range of clients – including elected officials, community and preservation groups, and classes of underprivileged individuals – we have taken the government to task for misconduct. Our successes have been possible because of thorough research and preparation, extensive evidence gathering, spirited in-court advocacy, and proactive public relations approaches outside the courtroom.

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“If there is magic in the law, Jim Walden has found it because we sometimes seemed out of options. And Jim Walden would typically burst into the room and come up with a new option. And they had – his options had the extraordinary tendency to work.” Mayor Bill de Blasio, City Hall Press Conference, 2/22/14

Representative Cases

  • Represented then-Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and six community groups in connection with state government’s illegal shutdown of local hospital. After nearly six months of intense litigation, State of New York settled by giving in to plaintiffs’ key demand.
  • Represented family of 15-year-old African-American boy who was shot and killed, while unarmed, by Jersey City Police. Valuable settlement obtained for victim’s estate.
  • Represented class of Social Security disability plaintiffs systematically denied disability benefits by biased administrative law judges.  Social Security Administration settled, after months of litigation earned plaintiffs right to discovery over internal SSA correspondence. New hearings before unbiased Administrative Law Judges given as one aspect of sweeping settlement.
  • Represented state assembly member, New York University faculty group, and host of community, parks and preservation groups in challenging City Planning Commission’s approval of massive construction plan. Trial court entered judgment for plaintiffs, holding that construction plan illegally alienated three public parks. Now on appeal.
  • Represented NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer in connection with legal challenge to Department of Homeless Services’ use of illegal, unregistered contracts. Trial court entered judgment in Comptroller’s favor.
  • Represented elected officials, community, park and preservation groups challenging the illegal alienation of public park and historic building. After companion filings in federal and state courts against National Park Service and New York Park agencies, won final judgments in both, declaring government’s action illegal and void.
  • Represented client in wrongful termination suit after client fired because of transgender status. After deposition of employer, company entered into full settlement, with back pay.
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