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Civil Rights

The United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California, in coordination with the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, is responsible for enforcing the federal civil rights laws in the Northern District, both through civil litigation and criminal prosecution. The Civil Division enforces a variety of laws, including the Fair Housing Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Voting Rights Act, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act and violations of laws that protect against patterns and practices of discrimination regarding race, ethnicity, gender and religion.

The Criminal Division prosecutes violations of the criminal civil rights laws, including laws prohibiting hate crimes, sex trafficking, labor trafficking, and the use of unreasonable force by those acting under color of law.

The office welcomes information from the public that brings to our attention possible violations of our nation's civil rights laws. At the same time, while the scope of our civil rights practice is broad, the authority of the United States Department of Justice to investigate and seek relief for individual complaining parties for alleged civil rights violations is limited. We may investigate and seek to remedy alleged discriminatory conduct only where and in the manner specifically authorized by law. For example, the office has authority to investigate and seek to remedy patterns and practices of certain unlawful discriminatory conduct, but we generally do not have the authority to represent individuals in their pursuit of private civil rights claims.

The United States Attorney’s Office is primarily a legal office and not an investigative agency. However, the Civil Rights Coordinator will evaluate your complaint and may take action on it or refer the complaint to another agency for investigation or other action.

Please keep in mind that this office cannot represent you in any matter. Therefore, you may need to consult and retain your own attorney.

The National Crime Victim Bar Association may be able to assist. You can contact them for more information, (202) 467-8716 or (844) 529-4357, or email or visit their website.

If you have information concerning a potential violation of the federal civil rights laws that you wish to bring to our attention, please go to and follow the instructions.  Alternatively, you may complete the Civil Rights Complaint Form and email or fax it to the Civil Rights Coordinator in our Civil Division.

Civil Rights Coordinator, Civil Division
Email to:

United States Attorney's Office
450 Golden Gate Avenue, 11th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94102

(415) 436-7200
 Attn: Civil Rights Coordinator, Civil Division

Updated October 12, 2021