Appellate Section

Appellate Section


Hallway from the Department of Justice

The Appellate Section was created in 1974 as a component of the Civil Rights Division. The Section works cooperatively with the trial sections in each of the Division's substantive enforcement areas in representing the United States in civil rights cases in the federal courts of appeals. Many of the Section's cases are appeals from district court judgments in cases originally handled by the Division's trial sections.

The Appellate Section also monitors federal civil rights cases in which the United States is not a party. In many of these cases, especially those that involve developing or problematic areas of civil rights law or that may significantly affect the Division's enforcement responsibilities, the Section files amicus curiae briefs in the courts of appeals to set forth the government's position. The Section also works with the Solicitor General's Office in developing the government's position in Supreme Court cases involving civil rights issues. In addition, the Section provides legal counsel to other components of the Division regarding civil rights issues.

Since its formation, the Appellate Section has been involved in numerous significant cases that have shaped federal civil rights jurisprudence. The Section works to provide the highest standards of legal representation to the government in the administration and enforcement of the nation's civil rights laws.

Recent Filings

Daves v. Dallas County, click here for the Brief as Amicus (5th Cir. April 5, 2021)

Smith v. Boston, click here for the Brief as Amicus (1st Cir. April 2, 2021)

United States v. Daniel Davis, click here for the Brief as Appellee (5th Cir. March 29, 2021)

United States v. Arkansas Department of Education, click here for the Response to Petition for Rehearing and Rehearing En Banc (8th Cir. March 19, 2021)

United States v. Puerto Rico, click here for the Redacted Brief as Appellee (1st Cir. March 16, 2021)


Thomas Chandler


Appellate Section
(202) 307-3192
FAX - (202) 514-8490


Email: General Appellate Contact:


Amicus curiae suggestions may be submitted to Submissions should include case name, docket number, circuit/district court name, a brief description of the case and issue, and the current status if known.

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