Lauren Despot Krofcheck, Esq., a partner in the firm’s Pittsburgh Office, successfully obtained a dismissal of a civil rights conspiracy claim alleging causes of action under 42 U.S.C. §1983.  The lawsuit was filed against multiple state and private individuals; Attorney Krofcheck represented one of the alleged state actors.

Plaintiff’s complaint was filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, and made claims that the Defendants allegedly conspired to deprive Plaintiff of property without due process.  Plaintiff demanded $100 million in compensatory and punitive damages.

The Court held that Plaintiff failed to allege a constitutional violation and dismissed the state client represented by Attorney Krofcheck from the action.  The Court also noted that another defense Attorney Krofcheck argued regarding Qualified Immunity may also be applicable to this case, but it did not require a full analysis on the merits due to its holding.  Lastly, the Court agreed that any causes of action brought against the State employees who were sued in their official capacity for monetary damages are barred by the Eleventh Amendment.

The Defendants also collectively presented common interest arguments that the Court found valid, including arguments under the Rooker-Feldman Doctrine which barred the Federal Court’s review of previous Orphans’ Court’s Orders; Plaintiff’s failure to state a conspiracy claim under 42 U.S.C. §1985(3); and lack of jurisdiction over a variety of potential state law claims, including fraud, theft, theft by deception, conversion, replevin, invasion of privacy, trespass, and unfair and deceptive business practices.

If you have any questions about this case or any other insurance defense litigation issues in Pennsylvania, please contact Lauren Despot Krofcheck, Esq. at lkrofcheck@c-wlaw.com or (412) 563-2500.