Due Process Violation Attorney in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Fair treatment of all people, regardless of age, race, gender, or any other protected characteristics, is a pillar of our legal system. That is why we must take a firm stand when someone is treated unfairly. If your rights to due process have been violated, H. Rosen Law, P.C. can help. Reach out to our skilled and experienced civil rights attorney in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to start discussing your case. We also proudly serve clients throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania, including Harrisburg and Scranton. Together, we can work to obtain the justice you deserve.
What Is Due Process in Pennsylvania?
Due process refers to the rights we hold, specifically the process that must happen before some of those rights are taken away. Rights such as liberty and property cannot be taken away unless a specific process guarantees fair treatment.
Let’s consider liberty for a moment. A person’s right to liberty can be taken away when they commit a crime. An individual can be charged, tried, and convicted. Upon conviction, the individual may be deprived of their liberty due to incarceration.
In this scenario, due process refers to the events that need to occur before an individual loses their right to liberty. The government, or any other institution for that matter, cannot arbitrarily decide to remove these rights. The charged individual must have an opportunity to defend themselves and receive fair and equitable treatment.
If any of these conditions are not met, there could be a due process violation. As a result, any conviction, sentence, decision, or ruling may be void due to a lack of due process. Judges and attorneys must ensure that due process is always followed to guarantee rights and adherence to the law.
What Is Procedural Due Process in Pennsylvania?
Procedural due process refers to the procedures that need to occur for rights to be removed. Without these procedures, it is unlawful to remove a person’s rights.
Note that the Constitution guarantees procedural due process. The Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments guarantee procedural due process. Supreme Court decisions have upheld rights to due process over the years. These decisions have cemented the notion that rights outlined in the Constitution require due process before the government can act.
For instance, it is unlawful for the government to seize private property without due process. An individual may lose their rights to property only until after due process has been duly satisfied. Furthermore, the government must explore possible alternative arrangements before seizing property.
What Is Substantive Due Process in Pennsylvania?
Substantive due process tends to be more controversial since it considers rights that go beyond what is explicitly stated in the Constitution. These are rights that we know belong to people, yet they are not clearly stated in black and white. A good example of substantive due process pertains to the right to privacy. While the right to privacy is not stated directly in the law, Supreme Court decisions have upheld this right. The right to privacy is evident in law enforcement’s limitations to conducting searches and seizures.
For instance, law enforcement cannot enter private property without a search warrant. Due process must be satisfied before a judge can issue a search warrant. Then, individuals may allow law enforcement officers to enter the property after they have read and understood the terms of the warrant.
Please bear in mind that due process was put in place to prevent arbitrary and tyrannical rule over citizens. Due process is meant to ensure that people’s rights are respected while ensuring everyone receives fair treatment according to the law.
Examples of Due Process Violations
Let’s take a look at specific examples of due process violations:
The Fifth Amendment protects individuals from unfair charges and accusations. For instance, a person cannot self-incriminate. A confession made under duress (i.e., torture or coercion) can be considered inadmissible during a trial.
The Sixth Amendment guarantees that individuals shall have a fair and impartial trial, including the assistance of appropriate legal counsel. A violation may occur in situations where juries are not impartial, the judge makes a biased decision, or a defendant appears in court without legal representation. Inappropriate trial proceedings are often the cause for mistrials and successful appeals.
The Fourteenth Amendment is the specific constitutional guarantee that no person shall be deprived of rights without due process. For instance, a person cannot be convicted or sentenced without a fair trial. Even when a person is caught committing a crime, they still have the right to a trial.
Protecting One’s Rights in Pennsylvania
The Constitution protects every citizen’s rights as described in the Fourth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments. However, understanding the legal details of these protections may be challenging and confusing. That is why enlisting the help of a skilled civil rights attorney is critical. An experienced attorney can help protect your rights, especially in situations of law enforcement abuse, ill treatment, and procedural inconsistencies.
Due process violations can lead to mistrials, overturned verdicts by appeals, amended sentences, or even acquittals. However, finding the right options depends on specific cases and individual circumstances. Consequently, getting the right legal counsel is crucial in criminal and civil cases.
Due Process Violation Attorney Serving Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
At H. Rosen Law, P.C., we are committed to defending our clients’ rights to fair and equitable treatment. We believe everyone should have the same protections as afforded by our Constitution. Call today to speak with a knowledgeable civil rights attorney to determine your options and protect your rights. Don’t delay. Enforce your rights today.