Candappa Law Firm has successfully litigated cases involving civil rights, criminal defense, education, employment and personal injury law. Our civil rights cases have included police misconduct, freedom of speech, and housing and disability discrimination. Our criminal defense cases have included felony and misdemeanor charges. The following is a small sample of our cases.

Civil Rights

  • Secured $1 million monetary settlement for economic losses suffered by a drug treatment center in a disability discrimination case against the City of San Jose.

  • Secured $775,000 monetary settlement on behalf of three African-American students in a federal lawsuit against the City of Antioch and Antioch Unified School District.  Case involved racial profiling, unlawful arrest, use of excessive force, and violation of due process rights.  Also secured consent decree requiring school district to revise its policies to combat race discrimination.

  • Secured six-figure monetary settlement on behalf of union organizers who were unlawfully arrested by Alameda County Sheriff’s deputies for peacefully picketing on a public sidewalk.  Also secured agreement requiring the Sheriff’s Office to train its deputies on the rights of unions to engage in union activity on public property.

  • Secured six-figure monetary settlement on behalf of an African-American woman against the Oakland Police Department in a case involving use of excessive force.

  • Secured monetary settlement on behalf of a client against the City of Hayward and a private security company in a case involving unlawful arrest and use of excessive force.

  • Secured monetary settlement on behalf of an African-American woman against the Contra Costa County Housing Authority in a case involving race discrimination and violation of due process rights. Also secured injunctive relief requiring the Housing Authority to comply with federal and state laws protecting the confidentiality of juvenile records.

Criminal Defense

  • Obtained acquittal of client charged with vehicular manslaughter.  A Contra Costa County jury acquitted the client despite damaging prosecution testimony from eye witnesses and police officers who blamed the client for the fatal collision.

  • Obtained dismissals of wrongful charges against four Occupy Oakland demonstrators who were charged with misdemeanor crimes including battery on police, resisting police, vandalism, and obstructing a street or sidewalk.


  • Won readmission of student who was expelled by the San Francisco Unified School District for alleged residency violation.  In response to a petition for a writ of mandate, the San Francisco Superior Court ordered the student readmitted.  Our success resulted in the School District voluntarily staying the expulsion of two other students.

  • Succeeded in overturning the expulsions of three African-American students by the Antioch Unified School District.  The students were expelled in connection with an incident involving Antioch Police Department officers at a private business.  Mr. Candappa and the ACLU of Northern California filed writs of mandate resulting in two expulsions being overturned by the Contra Costa County Superior Court.  A third expulsion was overturned by the County Board of Education.


  • Secured monetary settlement on behalf of an African-American man in a wrongful termination and race discrimination case.

  • Secured six-figure pre-lawsuit settlement on behalf of a woman in a sexual harassment and wrongful termination case.



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The Oakland Institute is an independent policy think tank that focuses on increasing public participation and fair debate on critical food and agriculture, poverty and international development issues. Our successful campaigns in the U.S. and abroad, especially on the topic of international land deals, have resulted in threats of legal action. The thoroughness, timely response, and attentiveness to every detail by our legal counsel, Jivaka Candappa, allows us to continue with our mission without operating from a place of fear. In this struggle of David vs. Goliath, Jivaka Candappa's legal support is an invaluable asset to us!

- Anuradha Mittal, Executive Director

Mr. Candappa has been a great support; he has been very understanding and honest with me. I can’t say enough about this man. I was a nervous wreck worrying about what was going to happen to my husband, but once I spoke with Mr. Candappa, I had complete confidence in his ability to defend my husband.

- N.M.
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3268 Governor Drive
San Diego, CA 92122
(858) 768-0080