David C. Shaw was graduated from Union College in 1966 and the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1973. He practiced law as an attorney with the Hartford Legal Aid Society from 1973 through 1984. He has been engaged in the private practice of law from 1984 to the present. He established the Law Offices of David C. Shaw, LLC in 1991.
Attorney Shaw has been the lead counsel in many hearings and lawsuits that have improved the lives of children and adults with disabilities. Some recent examples include:
• In F. v. East Hartford Bd. of Educ. (Due Process Hearing Case No. 07-378 ) (), he obtained an order requiring the Board to provide two years of compensatory education to a student with intellectual disabilities for failing to address his need for transitional services under the IDEA.
• In M. v. Greenwich Bd. of Educ. (Due Process Hearing Case No. 07-396), (), he obtained an order requiring the Greenwich Board of Education to provide two years of compensatory education to a nineteen year old with severe learning disabilities who had limited reading skills.
• In R.F. v. Regional School District No. 9 (Due Process Hearing Case No. 07-139), () he obtained an order requiring two years of compensatory education for the failure to identify and provide special education to a child with learning disabilities.
• He secured an order from a hearing officer requiring the Granby School system to place a child with learning disabilities in the Lindamood-Bell Program followed by a structured program in Granby in C. v. Granby, Due Process Hearing No. 04-368. ().
• In P. v. Newington Board of Education, 2007 WL 2821359 (D.Conn. 2007), he obtained an order requiring compensatory education and the hiring of a mutually acceptable independent consultant to develop a program for a child with intellectual disabilities in regular classes. (, District of Connecticut Case 3:06cv009, Judge A.W. Thompson, Ruling 09/18/07). The case is now on appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
• In C. v. Voluntown, 226 F.3d 60 (2nd Cir. 2000), he obtained an order from a federal court (http://www.ctd.uscourts.gov/opinions/103000.GLG.Voluntown.pdf), and the United States Court of Appeals requiring the Board to place the child in a private school.
• In H. v. Wallingford, Due Process Hearing No. 02-223, (), he obtained an order requiring proper supports for a child with intellectual disabilities in regular classes.
• In G.M. v. New Britain Bd. of Educ., 173 F.3d 77 (2nd Cir. 1999), he obtained an order requiring the Board to provide a community based transition program to address G.M.’s individual needs.
• In A.S. v. Norwalk, he obtained a federal court order () prohibiting the school from removing a [replaced the with ‘a’ ] child from regular classes.
• In P. v. Regional School District #15, he obtained an order from a federal court requiring appropriate programming for a child with autism.
With regard to class actions, Attorney Shaw is lead counsel in P.J. v. State of Connecticut, . That lawsuit seeks to increase the number of children with intellectual disabilities in regular classes with supplementary aids and services in Connecticut. He has also handled over one hundred cases in which he sought and obtained a properly supported regular class placements for children with a wide range of disabilities.
He was lead counsel and counsel for the plaintiff class in Messier v. Southbury Training School, No. 3:94CV01706 (EBB). That case seeks decent care and community placement for the five hundred residents of Southbury Training School. The case was tried to conclusion for 123 days during the period September 1998 through October 1999.
The Court ruled in Messier v. Southbury Training School, 562 F.Supp. 2d 294 (D.Conn. 2008) that the community placement practices of the Connecticut Department of Developmental Services violate the rights of the 500 class members living at Southbury Training School secured by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution and the American with Disabilities Act.
Attorney Shaw was lead counsel in C.A.R.C. v. Thorne, which obtained community placements for the 1200 residents of Mansfield Training School; ARC/Connecticut v. O’Meara, , that obtained funding for over 1000 persons on the DMR residential waiting list, Hillburn v. Maher, that obtained adaptive wheelchairs for over 400 severely disabled nursing home residents in Connecticut; Young v. Coleman, that required the purchase of wheelchair accessible standard-size buses in the Hartford, New Haven and Stamford urbanized areas, and CCCH v. Cotter, which required that the Connecticut Housing Courts be made accessible for wheelchair users.
Attorney Shaw has also obtained money damages against school or public officials and treating physicians for wrongful conduct that has physically and emotionally harmed persons with disabilities.(See, for example, .) Those cases include situations in which substantial money damages were sought and obtained for the sexual abuse, physical abuse or death of children or adults with autism, intellectual disabilities, and other disabilities.
Attorney Shaw has tried many cases to verdict in the federal and state courts. He has also tried many administrative hearings and pursued numerous appeals to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and has had several cases decided by the United States Supreme Court and Connecticut Supreme Court.