Local Government Immunity Defense: Litigation Challenges

Navigating Types of Immunities, Legal Principles, Statutory Construction, and Section 1983 Qualified Immunity

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Course Materials

This CLE course will provide counsel for local governments with a review of challenges in bringing or defending government actions. The panel will explain the different types of immunities, analyze recent cases, and discuss approaches for handling and raising objections to this type of action.


Municipal liability actions involve complex issues. Whether bringing or defending against a government suit, counsel must understand the types of immunities available, legal principles and statutory construction.

Differentiating between sovereign immunity and governmental immunity is critical in recognizing defense implications. Understanding qualified immunity in Section 1983 actions is also important. Key cases provide guidance for handling and defending municipal liability actions.

Listen as our panel of municipal law counsel discusses different types of immunities, challenges in bringing or defending actions against governmental entities, legal principles and statutory construction, and strategies in handling and raising objections to actions against municipalities.



  1. Types of immunities
  2. Qualified immunity under Section 1983 actions
  3. Common law principles
  4. Statutory construction
  5. Recent cases


The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • What factors determine whether absolute or qualified immunity is applicable to actions of government officials?
  • What challenges arise in bringing or defending against Section 1983 actions?
  • What guidance is provided by recent cases to develop approaches in bringing or defending actions against local government officials?

Following the speaker presentations, you'll have an opportunity to get answers to your specific questions during the interactive Q&A.


Terrence L. Dunst
Terrence L. Dunst

Bakke Norman

He represents cities, villages and towns in northwestern Wisconsin in all areas of municipal law, including zoning,...  |  Read More

Robin A. Melvin
Robin A. Melvin

Graves Dougherty Hearon & Moody

She practices administrative law, with an emphasis on water law, utility law, and insurance law. She is a published...  |  Read More

C. David Dietz
C. David Dietz
Assistant Ramsey County Atty
Ramsey County Attorney's Office

He is an assistant county attorney for the Ramsey County Attorney's Office and a Board Certified Civil Trial...  |  Read More

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