Civil Rights

Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward, P.A. represents individuals and public interest groups in civil rights and constitutional litigation before the federal and state courts and administrative agencies. Our civil rights practice encompasses First Amendment and due process law, the prosecution and defense of defamation claims, affirmative free speech claims, election law, employment law, prisoner rights, and criminal justice reform issues. Our election law practice also centers around voting rights and related cases that advocate for equal representation for underserved communities.

Representative matters include:

  • Establishing a constitutional right to breastfeed, recognized under the Equal Rights Amendment to the New Mexico Constitution, through pro bono representation of an inmate seeking to breastfeed her child.
  • Successful defense of a religious organization’s right to import and use a controlled substance used in religious ceremonies, including a unanimous favorable decision in the Supreme Court of the United States.
  • Representation of a charity accused of providing assistance to terrorist organizations.
  • Obtained settlement from Los Alamos National Laboratories and CBS Broadcasting, Inc. for defamation following false allegations of misuse of government funds.
  • Successfully challenged New Mexico’s voter registration laws, obtaining a decision from the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit that the State of New Mexico’s voter registration practices violated the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 by improperly withholding voter registration applications from certain public assistance clients.
  • Secured a preliminary injunction, along with co-counsel Mexican American Legal Defense Fund (MALDEF), prohibiting the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department from targeting immigrants by requiring interviews to establish residency and citizenship as part of receiving a driver’s license in the state of New Mexico.
  • Representation of individuals in redistricting litigation seeking to guarantee equal representation and that every vote counts.


Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward P.A. lawyers were successful in obtaining Presidential clemency for their client, Chelsea Manning, which reduced her sentence from 35 years to 7 years and resulted in her release and continue to represent Ms. Manning in the underlying appeal of her conviction in the military courts.