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What is Due Process?

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What is Due Process?

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Due process is a legal requirement in the United States and refers to the preservation and respect of all legal rights that are owed to a person, specifically in the administration of justice. The term is most commonly used when discussing the right to a fair trial process. Due process or “due process of law” is protected in The Fifth Amendment of The Constitution of the United States, stating that no person can be “deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of life”. This requirement is designed to prevent unjust treatment, seizure of property, or imprisonment of a person who has not had the opportunity to be assessed by a trial of their peers in unobstructed court proceedings.

Due process provides a boundary over which the government is not allowed to step.

This legal requirement was written into the constitution to prevent an imbalance of power, only allowing the powers of government to exercise their will in accordance with the laws designed to safeguard the protection of individual rights. For example, this means a person cannot be arrested, charged, and imprisoned without being given the opportunity to exercise their rights as a United States citizen. Some of the most well-known of these rights include the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney.

There are two kinds of due process violations:

  • Procedural due process violations: These violations occur when a person is not notified of the charges or proceedings against them, and/or are not given an adequate opportunity to respond.
  • Substantive due process violations: These violations occur when a person’s rights to freedom of expression and association are violated, even if those rights were not explicitly included in the Constitution.

Due process is something the average person cannot be charged with violating.

Due process can only be violated by a government entity, and often plays a part in criminal and civil cases where someone was not offered access to their constitutional rights without a justifiable reason. Unfortunately, just because a law is a good idea does not mean that people in power unequivocally follow it. In fact, it doesn’t even mean that the average layperson will follow it. The only difference is that a friend or neighbor cannot be sued for a violation of due process.

If you have suffered from a violation of due process, contact an attorney.

Civil law attorneys specialize in litigating cases regarding due process violations. These violations can be extremely harmful to a person’s life and future and should not be ignored. Additionally, these attorneys will know exactly where and how to begin collecting evidence to support the validity of their clients’ claims, and can offer the victims of these violations the best chance at receiving fair compensation for their damages. Many of these attorneys offer free consultations, so it can’t hurt to reach out and let them evaluate your situation.

To learn more about due process or if you suspect you might have been deprived of this constitutional right, seek legal counsel from a civil rights attorney.

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