What it isn’t
Qualified immunity is not a law! It is a legal doctrine, which means it was created through a progressive series of court rulings.
Because qualified immunity is a legal doctrine and not a law, this means that victims of police brutality have to show a legal precedent to proceed with their case in civil court, even if their rights were clearly violated by a police officer. A legal precedent is an earlier case that is the same or nearly the same to the set of facts for this case. This makes it really hard to find precedent, because it is very rare for two incidents to be exactly the same!