Darpana Sheth

Constitutional Litigator, Institute for Justice

Darpana Sheth is an attorney with the Institute for Justice.  She joined the Institute in 2010 and litigates cutting-edge constitutional cases to protect economic liberty and property rights in federal court.  Darpana is part of the trial team that won a federal court ruling striking down Louisiana’s government-imposed monopoly on the sale of caskets, a ruling that was upheld on appeal.  Currently, Darpana represents medical providers in a constitutional challenge to Virginia’s requirement that medical providers receive government permission in the form of a certificate of need before purchasing medical-imaging devices.

On the property rights front, Darpana was part of the trial team that successfully defended the family-run Motel Caswell from a federal civil forfeiture action by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts.  Currently, she is lead attorney in a federal class action against the city of Philadelphia and its law enforcement officials challenging the city’s egregious civil forfeiture practices.

Darpana has testified before the U.S. Congress, state legislatures, and the city council of the District of Columbia in favor of efforts to reform civil forfeiture laws.  Darpana testified before the Judicial Conference Advisory Committees on proposed amendments to procedural rules used in federal courts.

Darpana’s opinions and views on legal issues have been featured in outlets including CNN, The Washington PostForbesThe Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Prior to joining the Institute for Justice, Darpana served as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of New York and as law clerk to the Honorable Jerome A. Holmes of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.  She also worked in private practice as a litigation associate at the Manhattan law firm of Chadbourne & Parke, LLP.  Darpana graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History, and attended the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium.  She earned her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center and also attended the Washington College of Law’s Program in Law and Government at American University.

Darpana Sheth is a member of the New York bar.

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Publications and Multimedia
Prosecutors Run Amok? - Event Audio/Video
2015 National Lawyers Convention
November 19, 2015
Kaley v. United States - Post-Decision SCOTUScast
SCOTUScast 4-8-14 featuring Darpana Sheth
April 08, 2014
Policing for Profit: The Abuse of Forfeiture Laws
Engage Volume 14, Issue 3 October 2013
February 17, 2014
Civil Asset Forfeiture - Podcast
Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Podcast
November 22, 2013