All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

O Hayden Griffin III

Advisory Committee Members

H Daniel Butler

Kathryn Morgan

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Master of Science (MS) College of Arts and Sciences


Inmate litigation has evolved since the 1960s, and little is known about the state of inmate litigation since the enactment of the Prisoner Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) in 1996. Additionally, the current conditions of solitary confinement are largely unknown, and correctional facilities operate with little accountability. This study provides an analysis of Section 1983 lawsuits across six states and decided from 2015 to 2020. All cases included in the study involved inmates filing a Section 1983 lawsuit due to a constitutional violation experienced during their time spent in solitary confinement. The findings showed that most lawsuits were unsuccessful due to failure to establish a constitutional claim or provide sufficient evidence to overcome a defendant’s qualified immunity.