FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Peter G. Farrell

New York City Law Department, Office of the Corporation Counsel
Deputy Chief, Special Federal Litigation Division
New York, NY, USA


Peter G. Farrell is employed by the New York City Law Department as a Deputy Chief of the Special Federal Litigation Division.   Mr. Farrell and the Division defend the City of New York and its municipal employees in federal court against individual and class action lawsuits brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 alleging violations of the United States Constitution and pendent state law claims.

Mr. Farrell’s management responsibilities as Deputy Chief include the oversight of the Division’s more than 100 attorneys including weekly case reviews where he meets with the assigned case attorney to assess the merits of each case and decide the appropriate litigation strategy.

In addition to his management responsibilities, Mr. Farrell has also led the City’s defense for the past several years in Handschu v. Special Services Division and Raza v. City of New York which alleged an NYPD policy of conducting unlawful surveillance and investigations based solely upon religious status.   Both cases were successfully resolved earlier this year after the court held a several day fairness hearing and eventually approved the terms of the settlement including revisions to the NYPD’s guidelines that govern counter-terrorism investigations.

Mr. Farrell previously supervised and led the City’s defense in over one-hundred individual and class action cases arising out of arrests of protesters during the 2004 Republican National Convention.  As part of that litigation, the City ultimately prevailed on its assertion of the law enforcement privilege over confidential intelligence documents and created leading 2d Circuit precedent -- In Re City of New York, 607 F.3d 923 (2d Cir. 2010).

Mr. Farrell was also one of the attorneys who successfully defended at trial the challenge to the NYPD’s policy of conducting random searches of bags when entering the NYC subway in the case of MacWade v. City of New York.   He also received a defense verdict last year in a six day jury trial in the Southern District of New York defending individual police officers against claims of false arrest and excessive force.

Mr. Farrell graduated cum laude from the SUNY Buffalo Law School in 1990 where he was a member of the Buffalo Law Review and began his career at Lord Day and Lord, Barrett Smith and subsequently worked at Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP before moving to the NYC Law Department in 2002.

Peter G. Farrell is associated with the following items:
Live Webcast  Live Webcast 34th Annual Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation, Thursday, October 26, 2017, New York, NY
Pro Bono  Pro Bono 34th Annual Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation, Thursday, October 26, 2017, New York, NY
PLI Grpcast-Live Web  PLI Grpcast-Live Web 34th Annual Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation, Thursday, October 26, 2017, Atlanta, GA
34th Annual Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation, Thursday, October 26, 2017, New Brunswick , NJ
34th Annual Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation, Thursday, October 26, 2017, Cleveland, OH
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