The Litigation Division mainly defends the city against claims and lawsuits in a variety of legal matters related to the day-to day operations of the city. The Litigation Division manages all phases of litigation from investigations, pretrial, trial settlement, and appeal processes. The Litigation Division handles a wide range of issues involving appeals, city code violations, environmental regulations. constitutional issues, personal injury, property damage, employment legal issues, contract disputes, real estate, zoning and land use. The division also pursues lawsuits against businesses and individuals for violations that affect the quality of life of the residents in our city. The Litigation Division is divided into seven sections that specialize in various practice areas.
The Torts Section defends the city and its employees in personal injury and property damage lawsuits, provides advice to the Office of Risk Management in the handling of complex claims, and investigates and makes recommendations on death claims filed against the city. The section also handles claims and defends lawsuits involving allegations of federal constitutional and civil rights violations, and state-law torts allegedly committed by Dallas police officers or other city employees. The section handles lawsuits from initial service of process on the city or employees through the final disposition, including appeal.
This section handles collection and bankruptcy matters involving the City as a creditor. The section pursues delinquent accounts for Dallas water utilities, convention center, housing and neighborhood revitalization department, real estate, and other city departments. The section also handles lien payoff requests, subrogation matters, and seeks to collect on judgments the City has obtained. The section is involved with ad valorem tax matters that affect the City, and it handles various real estate foreclosure matters.
This section handles all employment-related legal matters. The section represents city departments in internal administrative disciplinary appeals and grievances before the city manager, administrative law judges, the civil service board, and the park board. In addition, the section represents the city in employment-related claims and in litigation filed against the City and individual defendants in federal and state court, including claims alleging constitutional violations, claims of discrimination and/or retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Texas Labor Code, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Texas Whistleblower Act, and other employment based claims. The section further represents the City and departments in administrative hearings in connection with state agencies, such as unemployment compensation appeals before the Texas Workforce Commission and F-5 hearings before the State Office of Administrative Hearings. In addition to the above, the section advises the Human Resources Department and other city departments, executives, and leaders on employment issues, reviews internal procedures, administrative directives, and personnel rules changes, and assists the Human Resources Department with employment-related investigations.
City government in Dallas is a large, diverse, and complex operation. The mission of the General Litigation Section is to represent the City and its officials and employees in a wide range of claims and lawsuits, which can arise from those operations, including: challenges to City ordinances and policies, federal and state constitutional claims, contract disputes, public utility regulation, disputes arising from public works projects, eminent domain, environmental issues, land use and zoning disputes, lease disputes, and disputes involving title, easements and other property interests. The scope of representation is equally wide: embracing everything from defending, on short notice, against demands for temporary restraining orders, through discovery and trial, to briefing and argument in the state and federal appellate courts.
Handling appeals is a distinct form of advocacy. The section considers legal issues arising out of the challenge to an order or judgment of a state or federal court. The section reviews the records of court proceedings, prepares written briefs, and argues or assists other sections in preparing for argument before the appellate courts. The section also reviews amicus curiae briefs when requested on items that concern or impact the City.
This section handles the criminal prosecution of Class C misdemeanors and violations of municipal ordinances in the Dallas Municipal Court. Class C misdemeanors include traffic violations, assault, family violence assault, disorderly conduct, public intoxication, and theft, among others. The Dallas Municipal Court is a court of record. Trials are held before a six-person jury or before the Court. The section also handles civil proceedings which consist of administrative adjudications of housing and premises violations in the Hearing Officer’s Court, dangerous dog appeals, animal control issues, parking appeals, and bond forfeitures.
The Prosecution Section prosecutes Class C misdemeanor family violence assault cases in the City of Dallas. Experienced victim advocates are available to explain the court process and to help victims and their families find additional resources. To speak with a victim advocate, please contact the Family Violence Unit at (214)-670-5606.
The Prosecution Section represents the City of Dallas in the following civil proceedings: administrative adjudications of housing and premises violations in the Hearing Officer’s Court, dangerous dog appeals, animal control issues, parking appeals, and bond forfeitures.
2014 Main Street, Suite 227 Dallas, Texas 75021 Phone: (214)-670-4439 Fax: (214)-670-4814 Monday - Friday 8:00 am-5:00pm (Courts building closes at 4:30, please call to make arrangements)