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Full-Text Articles in Law

Mapping The Iceberg: The Impact Of Data Sources On The Study Of District Courts, Christina L. Boyd, Pauline T. Kim, Margo Schlanger Aug 2020

Mapping The Iceberg: The Impact Of Data Sources On The Study Of District Courts, Christina L. Boyd, Pauline T. Kim, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Three decades ago, Siegelman and Donohue aptly characterized research about courts and litigation that relied only on published opinions as “studying the iceberg from its tip.” They implored researchers to view published district court opinions “with greater sensitivity to the ways in which such cases are unrepresentative of all cases”. The dynamic, multistage nature of trial court litigation makes a focus solely on published opinions particularly ill-suited to the study of federal district courts. Expanded electronic access to court documents now allows more pre-cise analysis of the ways in which published cases are unrepresentative and what differences that makes for ...


Federal Forum Provisions And The Internal Affairs Doctrine, Dhruv Aggarwal, Albert H. Choi, Ofer Eldar Aug 2020

Federal Forum Provisions And The Internal Affairs Doctrine, Dhruv Aggarwal, Albert H. Choi, Ofer Eldar

Articles

A key question at the intersection of state and federal law is whether corpo- rations can use their charters or bylaws to restrict securities litigation to federal court. In December 2018, the Delaware Chancery Court answered this question in the negative in the landmark decision Sciabacucchi v. Salzberg. The court invalidated “federal forum provisions” (“FFPs”) that allow companies to select federal district courts as the exclusive venue for claims brought under the Secur- ities Act of 1933 (“1933 Act”). The decision held that the internal affairs doc- trine, which is the bedrock of U.S. corporate law, does not permit ...


The Opioid Litigation: The Fda Is Mia, Catherine M. Sharkey Apr 2020

The Opioid Litigation: The Fda Is Mia, Catherine M. Sharkey

Dickinson Law Review

It is readily agreed that federal preemption of state tort law alters the balance between federal and state power. Federal preemption is a high-profile defense in almost all modern products liability cases. It is thus surprising to see how little attention has been given to federal preemption by courts and commentators in the opioid litigation. Opioid litigation provides a lens through which I explore the role of state and federal courts and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in striking the right balance of power. My purpose here is not to resolve the divide among the few courts that have ...


Out Of The Quandary: Personal Jurisdiction Over Absent Class Member Claims Explained, A. Benjamin Spencer Oct 2019

Out Of The Quandary: Personal Jurisdiction Over Absent Class Member Claims Explained, A. Benjamin Spencer

Faculty Publications

Since the Supreme Court's decision in Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California, San Francisco County, litigants and lower courts have wrestled with the issue of whether a federal court must be able to exercise personal jurisdiction with respect to each of the claims asserted by absent class members in a class action and, if so, what standard governs that jurisdictional determination. This issue is rapidly coming to a head and is poised for inevitable resolution by the Supreme Court in the near future; multiple circuit courts have heard appeals from district courts that have reached varying conclusions ...


Legislatively Directed Judicial Activism: Some Reflections On The Meaning Of The Civil Justice Reform Act, Matthew R. Kipp, Paul B. Lewis Mar 2019

Legislatively Directed Judicial Activism: Some Reflections On The Meaning Of The Civil Justice Reform Act, Matthew R. Kipp, Paul B. Lewis

Paul Lewis

With the Civil Justice Reform Act (CJRA), Congress attempted to further a trend that the federal judiciary had undertaken largely on its own initiative. Sensing a critical need to address the mounting expense and delay of federal civil litigation, Congress, like the judiciary, sought to increase the degree of early and active involvement of judges in the adjudicatory process. The result of this mandate has been a further emphasis on the role of the judge as a case manager. As a necessary corollary, the liberty and self-determination of individual litigants-ideals that have historically been seen as philosophical cornerstones of the ...


Class Actions, Indivisibility, And Rule 23(B)(2), Maureen Carroll Jan 2019

Class Actions, Indivisibility, And Rule 23(B)(2), Maureen Carroll

Articles

The federal class-action rule contains a provision, Rule 23(b)(2), that authorizes class-wide injunctive or declaratory relief for class-wide wrongs. The procedural needs of civil rights litigation motivated the adoption of the provision in 1966, and in the intervening years, it has played an important role in managing efforts to bring about systemic change. At the same time, courts have sometimes struggled to articulate what plaintiffs must show in order to invoke Rule 23(b)(2). A few years ago, the Supreme Court weighed in, stating that the key to this type of class action is the “indivisible” nature ...


Labor And Employment Law At The 2014-2015 Supreme Court: The Court Devotes Ten Percent Of Its Docket To Statutory Interpretation In Employment Cases, But Rejects The Argument That What Employment Law Really Needs Is More Administrative Law, Scott A. Moss Jan 2016

Labor And Employment Law At The 2014-2015 Supreme Court: The Court Devotes Ten Percent Of Its Docket To Statutory Interpretation In Employment Cases, But Rejects The Argument That What Employment Law Really Needs Is More Administrative Law, Scott A. Moss

Articles

No abstract provided.


Trends In Prisoner Litigation, As The Plra Enters Adulthood, Margo Schlanger Apr 2015

Trends In Prisoner Litigation, As The Plra Enters Adulthood, Margo Schlanger

Articles

The Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), enacted in 1996 as part of the Newt Gingrich "Contract with America," is now as old as some prisoners. In the year after the statute's passage, some commenters labeled it merely "symbolic." In fact, as was evident nearly immediately, the PLRA undermined prisoners' ability to bring, settle, and win lawsuits. The PLRA conditioned court access on prisoners' meticulously correct prior use of onerous and error-inviting prison grievance procedures. It increased filing fees, decreased attorneys' fees, and limited damages. It subjected injunctive settlements to the scope limitations usually applicable only to litigated injunctions. It ...


Prisoners' Rights Lawyers' Strategies For Preserving The Role Of The Courts, Margo Schlanger Apr 2015

Prisoners' Rights Lawyers' Strategies For Preserving The Role Of The Courts, Margo Schlanger

Articles

This Article is part of the University of Miami Law Review’s Leading from Below Symposium. It canvasses prisoners’ lawyers’ strategies prompted by the 1996 Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”). The strategies comply with the statute’s limits yet also allow U.S. district courts to remain a forum for the vindication of the constitutional rights of at least some of the nation’s millions of prisoners. After Part I’s introduction, Part II summarizes in several charts the PLRA’s sharp impact on the prevalence and outcomes of prison litigation, but demonstrates that there are still many cases and ...


Jones, Lackey, And Teague, Richard Broughton Feb 2015

Jones, Lackey, And Teague, Richard Broughton

Richard Broughton

In a recent, high-profile ruling, a federal court finally recognized that a substantial delay in executing a death row inmate violated the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishments. Courts have repeatedly rejected these so-called “Lackey claims,” making the federal court’s decision in Jones v. Chappell all the more important. And yet it was deeply flawed. This paper focuses on one of the major flaws in the Jones decision that largely escaped attention: the application of the non-retroactivity rule from Teague v. Lane. By comprehensively addressing the merits of the Teague bar as applied to Lackey claims ...


Anti-Plaintiff Bias In The Federal Appellate Courts, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Anti-Plaintiff Bias In The Federal Appellate Courts, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

A recent study of appellate outcomes reveals that defendants succeed significantly more often than plaintiffs on appeal from civil trials-especially from jury trials.


Plaintiphobia In The Appellate Courts: Civil Rights Really Do Differ From Negotiable Instruments, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Plaintiphobia In The Appellate Courts: Civil Rights Really Do Differ From Negotiable Instruments, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

Professors Clermont and Eisenberg conducted a systematic analysis of appellate court behavior and report that defendants have a substantial advantage over plaintiffs on appeal. Their analysis attempted to control for different variables that may affect the decision to appeal or the appellate outcome, including case complexity, case type, amount in controversy, and whether there had been a judge or a jury trial. Once they accounted for these variables and explored and discarded various alternate explanations, they came to the conclusion that a defendants' advantage exists probably because of appellate judges' misperceptions that trial level adjudicators are pro-plaintiff.


Appeal From Jury Or Judge Trial: Defendants' Advantage, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Appeal From Jury Or Judge Trial: Defendants' Advantage, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

The prevailing "expert" opinion is that jury verdicts are largely immune to appellate revision. Using a database that combines all federal civil trials and appeals decided since 1988, we find that jury trials, as a group, are in fact not so special on appeal. But the data do show that defendants succeed more than plaintiffs on appeal from civil trials, and especially from jury trials. Defendants appealing their losses after trial by jury obtain reversals at a 31% rate, while losing plaintiffs succeed in only 13% of their appeals from jury trials. Both descriptive analyses of the results and more ...


Xenophilia In American Courts, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Xenophilia In American Courts, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

Foreigner! The word says it all. Verging on the politically incorrect, the expression is full of connotation and implication. A foreigner will face bias. By such a thought process, many people believe that litigants have much to fear in courts foreign to them. In particular, non-Americans fare badly in American courts. Foreigners believe this. Even Americans believe this. Such views about American courts are understandable. After all, the grant of alienage jurisdiction to the federal courts, both original and removal, constitutes an official assumption that xenophobic bias is present in state courts. As James Madison said of state courts: “We ...


Exorcising The Evil Of Forum-Shopping, Kevin Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Exorcising The Evil Of Forum-Shopping, Kevin Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

Most of the business of litigation comprises pretrial disputes. A common and important dispute is over where adjudication should take place. Civil litigators deal with nearly as many change-of-venue motions as trials. The battle over venue often constitutes the critical issue in a case. The American way is to provide plaintiffs with a wide choice of venues for suit. But the American way has its drawbacks. To counter these drawbacks, an integral part of our court systems, and in particular the federal court system, is the scheme of transfer of venue "in the interest of justice." However, the leading evaluative ...


Judge Harry Edwards: A Case In Point!, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Judge Harry Edwards: A Case In Point!, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

Judge Harry Edwards dislikes empirical work that is not flattering to federal appellate judges. A few years ago Dean Richard Revesz published an empirical study of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit providing further support for the rather tame proposition that judges’ political orientation has some effect on outcome in some politically charged cases. A year later Judge Edwards published a criticism phrased in extreme terms. Dean Revesz then wrote a devastating reply by which he demonstrated that Judge Edwards “is simply wrong with respect to each of the numerous criticisms that he levels.” We ...


Simplifying The Choice Of Forum: A Reply, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg Dec 2014

Simplifying The Choice Of Forum: A Reply, Kevin M. Clermont, Theodore Eisenberg

Kevin M. Clermont

We have three things to think about here, as the real estate agents say—“location, location, location.” Accordingly, the two of us have engaged for several years in empirical studies aimed at gauging the effect of forum on case outcome. The results to date strongly suggest that forum really matters. An early piece of the puzzle fell into place in our study of venue. In that article, we examined the benefits and costs of the federal courts scheme of transfer of civil venue “in the interest of justice.” Ours was a pretty straightforward and simple cost-benefit analysis, but we supported ...


Trial By Jury Or Judge: Which Is Speedier?, Theodore Eisenberg, Kevin Clermont Dec 2014

Trial By Jury Or Judge: Which Is Speedier?, Theodore Eisenberg, Kevin Clermont

Kevin M. Clermont

Many take as a given that jury-tried cases consume more time than judge-tried cases. Judge Richard Posner of the Seventh Circuit, for example, opines: “Court queues are almost always greatest for parties seeking civil jury trials. This makes economic sense. Such trials are more costly than bench trials both because of jury fees (which … understate the true social costs of the jury) and because a case normally takes longer to try to a jury than to a judge …. Parties are therefore “charged” more for jury trials by being made to wait in line longer.” A close reading reveals that he ...


Courts In Cyberspace, Theodore Eisenberg, Kevin M. Clermont Dec 2014

Courts In Cyberspace, Theodore Eisenberg, Kevin M. Clermont

Kevin M. Clermont

No abstract provided.


Speedy Trial As A Viable Challenge To Chronic Underfunding In Indigent-Defense Systems, Emily Rose Nov 2014

Speedy Trial As A Viable Challenge To Chronic Underfunding In Indigent-Defense Systems, Emily Rose

Michigan Law Review

Across the country, underresourced indigent-defense systems create delays in taking cases to trial at both the state and federal levels. Attempts to increase funding for indigent defense by bringing ineffective assistance of counsel claims have been thwarted by high procedural and substantive hurdles, and consequently these attempts have failed to bring significant change. This Note argues that, because ineffective assistance of counsel litigation is most likely a dead end for system-wide reform, indigent defenders should challenge the constitutionality of underfunding based on the Sixth Amendment guarantee of speedy trial. Existing speedy trial jurisprudence suggests that the overworking and furloughing of ...


Kaleidoscopic Chaos: Understanding The Circuit Courts’ Various Interpretations Of § 2255’S Savings Clause, Jennifer L. Case Feb 2014

Kaleidoscopic Chaos: Understanding The Circuit Courts’ Various Interpretations Of § 2255’S Savings Clause, Jennifer L. Case

Jennifer L. Case

More than 65 years ago, Congress enacted a short statute (codified at 28 U.S.C. § 2255) to even the habeas corpus workload among the federal courts. That statute included a “Savings Clause,” which allows prisoners to challenge their convictions and sentences in a federal habeas petition when § 2255 is “inadequate or ineffective” for the task. Since that time—and with increasing frequency—the U.S. Courts of Appeals have developed wildly varying tests to determine when and how § 2255’s Savings Clause applies to prisoners’ attempts to bring federal habeas petitions under 28 U.S.C. § 2241.

In their ...


Amicus Briefs Of The National Association Of Consumer Advocates In Day V. Persels & Associates, 729 F.3d 1309 (11th Cir. 2013), Brian Wolfman Sep 2013

Amicus Briefs Of The National Association Of Consumer Advocates In Day V. Persels & Associates, 729 F.3d 1309 (11th Cir. 2013), Brian Wolfman

U.S. Supreme Court Briefs

These amicus briefs are likely to interest legal academics and practitioners who write, research, and practice in the areas of (1) federal courts, (2) class actions, (3) separation of powers, (4) constitutional law more generally, and (4) federal litigation.

In Day v. Persels & Associates, 729 F.3d 1309 (11th Cir. 2013), an absent class member objected to a class-action settlement. The objector argued that the settlement was unfair because, among other reasons, it provided no monetary recovery to the class members. In the district court, prior to class certification and settlement, the defendants and the named plaintiff had consented to authorize a federal magistrate judge to enter a final judgment in the action as permitted by 28 U.S.C. 636(c).When a magistrate judge enters a final judgment under section 636(c), the judgment is appealable directly to the court of appeals. No Article III district judge has any decision making role.

In the lower court in Day, the magistrate judge approved the class-action settlement, and the objector appealed directly to the Eleventh Circuit. At that point, my client—the National Association of Consumer Advocates (NACA)—entered the picture as an amicus. NACA argued (in order of breadth) that (1) 28 U.S.C. 636(c) is unconstitutional because consent is an insufficient basis to override the general constitutional requirement that only an Article III judge (and not a non-life-tenured magistrate judge) may enter a final federal-court judgment; (2) even if the parties’ consent to a magistrate judge ordinarily would suffice to make 28 U.S.C. 636(c) constitutional, the named parties’ consent in a class action is not constitutionally sufficient to bind absent class members because, as the class-action device ordinarily operates, absent class members lack the ability to provide the knowing and ...


Rule 408: Maintaining The Sheild For Negotiation In Federal And Bankruptcy Courts, Leslie T. Gladstone Jan 2013

Rule 408: Maintaining The Sheild For Negotiation In Federal And Bankruptcy Courts, Leslie T. Gladstone

Pepperdine Law Review

No abstract provided.


The Mandatory Summary Jury Trial In Federal Court: Foundationally Flawed, Nina Jill Spiegel Jan 2013

The Mandatory Summary Jury Trial In Federal Court: Foundationally Flawed, Nina Jill Spiegel

Pepperdine Law Review

No abstract provided.


Civil Rule 54(B): Seventy-Five And Ready For Retirement, Andrew S. Pollis Jan 2013

Civil Rule 54(B): Seventy-Five And Ready For Retirement, Andrew S. Pollis

Faculty Publications

As we commemorate the diamond anniversary of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, this Article takes a critical look at one of the failed Rules: Rule 54(b). Although many commentators have noted difficulties with Rule 54(b), this is the first effort to describe those difficulties comprehensively, analyze their root causes, and offer a workable alternative.

When an order resolves a discrete claim in a multi-claim action, Rule 54(b) permits a district court to sever the order for immediate appeal by “expressly determine[in] that there is no just reason for delay.” The rule was designed to ease ...


The S&P Litigation And Access To Federal Court: A Case Study In The Limits Of Our Removal Model, Gil Seinfeld Jan 2013

The S&P Litigation And Access To Federal Court: A Case Study In The Limits Of Our Removal Model, Gil Seinfeld

Articles

On June 6, 2013, the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered the consolidation of fifteen actions filed by state attorneys general against the Standard & Poor’s rating agency for its role in the collapse of the market for structured finance securities. The cases are important: The underlying events shook markets worldwide and contributed to a global recession, the legal actions themselves take aim at foundational aspects of the way rating agencies go about their business, and the suits threaten the imposition of significant fines and penalties against S&P. So it is unsurprising that the order of the ...


Discovering Discovery: Non-Party Access To Pretrial Information In The Federal Courts 1938-2006, Seymour Moskowitz Dec 2012

Discovering Discovery: Non-Party Access To Pretrial Information In The Federal Courts 1938-2006, Seymour Moskowitz

Seymour H. Moskowitz

In the modern era, the pretrial process is critical to the disposition of almost all litigation. The vast majority of cases never go to trial. Those which are contested at trial and upon appeal are often decided upon the results of the information gather before trial. This is true in both private litigation and in public interest cases where "private attorneys general" may only function effectively with court-enforced discovery. Despite the significance of the Article III courts to our society, transparency in their processes for resolving civil disputes has been severely compromised. Threats to openness emanate from multiple sources. This ...


De-Frauding The System: Sham Plaintiffs And The Fraudulent Joinder Doctrine, Matthew C. Monahan May 2012

De-Frauding The System: Sham Plaintiffs And The Fraudulent Joinder Doctrine, Matthew C. Monahan

Michigan Law Review

Playing off the strict requirements of federal diversity jurisdiction, plaintiffs can structure their suits to prevent removal to federal court. A common way to preclude removability is to join a nondiverse party. Although plaintiffs have a great deal of flexibility, they may include only those parties that have a stake in the lawsuit. Put another way, a court will not permit a plaintiff to join a party to a lawsuit when that party is being joined solely to prevent removal. The most useful tool federal courts employ to prevent this form of jurisdictional manipulation is Federal Rule of Civil Procedure ...


Clarification Needed: Fixing The Jurisdiction And Venue Clarification Act, William Baude Jan 2012

Clarification Needed: Fixing The Jurisdiction And Venue Clarification Act, William Baude

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

One hates to seem ungrateful. Judges and scholars frequently call for Congress to fix problems in the law of jurisdiction and procedure, and Congress doesn't usually intervene. In that light, the Jurisdiction and Venue Clarification Act ("JVCA"),[1] signed into law on December 7, 2011, ought to be a welcome improvement. And hopefully, on balance, it will be. But in at least one area that it attempts to clarify, the JVCA leaves much to be desired. Professor Arthur Hellman has called the JVCA "the most far-reaching package of revisions to the Judicial Code since the Judicial Improvements Act of ...


New Pleading, New Discovery, Scott Dodson Jan 2010

New Pleading, New Discovery, Scott Dodson

Michigan Law Review

Pleading in federal court has a new narrative. The old narrative was one of notice, with the goal of broad access to the civil justice system. New Pleading, after the landmark Supreme Court cases of Twombly and Iqbal, is focused on factual sufficiency, with the purpose of screening out meritless cases that otherwise might impose discovery costs on defendants. The problem with New Pleading is that factual insufficiency often is a poor proxy for meritlessness. Some plaintifs lack sufficient factual knowledge of the elements of their claims not because the claims lack merit but because the information they need is ...