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Stare Decisis In The Inferior Courts Of The United States, Joseph Mead
Law Faculty Articles and Essays
While circuit courts are bound to fallow circuit precedent under "law of the circuit" the practice among federal district courts is more varied and uncertain, routinely involving little or no deference to their own precedent. I argue that the different hierarchical levels and institutional characteristics do not account for the differences in practices between circuit and district courts. Rather, district courts can and should adopt a "law of the district" similar to that of circuit courts. Through this narrow proposal, I explore the historical stare decisis practices in federal courts that are not Supreme.