Babinski v. Sosnowsky
Opinion Date: August 21, 2023
Judge: Carl E. Stewart
Areas of Law: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Education Law
Louisiana State University (“LSU”) (collectively “the Professors”) appealed the district court’s denial of qualified immunity after Plaintiff alleged that they violated his Fourteenth Amendment right to due process by conspiring to prevent his continued enrollment in Louisiana State University’s (“LSU”) theatre program.
The Fifth Circuit reversed the district court’s determination that they were not entitled to qualified immunity and dismissed Plaintiff’s claims. The court held that the Professors lacked adequate notice that their conduct was violative of Plaintiff’s constitutional rights, and because they did not have this notice, they are entitled to qualified immunity. The court explained that the clearly established standard requires more than that—there must be a “high degree of specificity” between the alleged misconduct and the caselaw purporting to clearly establish the violation. Without it, the requisite “fair warning” required under the clearly established inquiry is absent.
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