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Suing a person in their official capacity? or individually?

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Suing a person in their official capacity? or individually? What are the important differences?
I am investigating whether I have a cause of action against a local government official. I understand there will likely be a defense of immunity. But my position would be that act giving rise to my monetary damages was an act beyond the authority of that official. In fact, our state supreme court has "adopted the brightline rule..." prohibiting such acts by officials in that particular position.
If I bring action, who would be defendant? official in official capacity? official individually? or both? Official capacity only would likely be a taller hurdle, I suspect, for I failed to comply with some time-sensitive requirements.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LegalEagle1 replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. I would like to assist you with your question today.

Usually one would sue the person as an individual and in there official capacity. If you sue under just one, they will assert they were acting in the other capacity and that you have failed to state a claim. The key difference is that if the person was acting in an official capacity they may have the defense of immunity. But it sounds like your State Supreme Court may have decided that they don't.

I hope that I have answered your question. Please let me know if you have more questions or need more information.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

That answer makes sense to me.


Would you now assist me with identifying a proper cause of action?


The prohibited act is one of altering public records without authorization (and, as previously indicated, directly contrary to finding by our sup. ct.)
Would that be fraud? or something else? This is somewhat important because the statute of limitations may come into play. I believe, for example, sol on fraud is on the high end. Whereas other misdeeds have a shorter sol.

Expert:  LegalEagle1 replied 1 year ago.
This question goes well beyond the scope of your initial inquiry. I don't mind answering an additional short and quick question, but I would greatly appreciate it if you would provide my first response with a positive rating. This is the only way I receive credit for assisting you.

Again why limit your claim to just one theory. If you are going to file a legal action you can assert multiple theories of recovery.

In Wisconsin the statute of limitations for fraud typically is 6 years. The time typically begins to run when the tort is discovered. So if fraud is not discovered until 7 years after it occurred the victim of the fraud can still seek recovery.

Please rate my answers with 3 or more stars so I receive credit for my work. You can continue to ask follow up questions after rating the answers.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have opened new question - hopefully you will get it.

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