Category: Appeal-Judicial

The Ninth Circuit Faces Uncertain Future As Immigration Case Looms

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is receiving a large amount of attention in the battle over President Trump’s immigration executive order. If some lawmakers have their way, however, then the court could soon be split up into two courts.

This weekend, two judges on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals bench asked for more information from the Trump administration and its opponents about the constitutionality of the executive order, after a federal judge in Washington state issued a temporary restraining order.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals could be the last stop in the quickly evolving legal struggle over President Trump’s order before the dispute gets to the Supreme Court. But it will not be the last time the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is in the national news.

Shortly after November’s general election, congressional Republicans started working on a bill that would remove six states from the Ninth Circuit to create a new federal judicial district. (A similar bill was stalled in Congress last year.)

Currently, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has jurisdiction over cases originating in Alaska, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon and Washington state that pertain to federal laws and issues related to federal constitutional claims.

The newly created 12th Circuit would include Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, and Washington state. Representative Mike Simpson of Idaho and Senators Jeff Flake and John McCain of Arizona are leading the current effort to get the legislation approved in Congress.

In a statement, Senator Flake said the action was needed because the Ninth Circuit is “oversized and overworked.” Flake cited the size of the court’s workload – it hears 33 percent more cases than any other federal circuit – and the failure rate of its cases accepted by the Supreme Court as reasons for the move.

“With problems like these, we are left to ask: Is the Ninth Circuit simply too big to succeed? If you are an Arizonan, the answer is unquestionably yes,” Flake said.

Critics of the move point to the Ninth Circuit’s reputation as one of the more liberal federal circuits in the country and that the move is an effort to create a federal district more friendly to Arizona and some other states.

The Ninth Circuit currently has 18 judges appointed by Democrats and seven appointed by Republicans, with four vacancies that can be filled by President Trump. Currently, seven of the nine judges in the prospective 12th Circuit states were appointed by Democratic Presidents.

The federal judiciary is organized into 12 regional circuit court systems that combine various states and the District of Columbia, and a Federal Circuit appeals court based in Washington, D.C., that hears dispute from other federal courts.

The last time a new Circuit Court Of Appeals was created was back in 1980, when Congress passed an act that created the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, with Alabama, Florida and George moving from the Fifth Circuit into the 11th Circuit. The former Fifth Circuit had 26 judges and also faced scheduling and logistical problems.

Read the original version of this article on Constitution Daily.

Washington State Employment Security Department (Unemployment) Precedential Decisions of Commissioner

The Precedential Decisions of Commissioner are published in a first series and second series. The first series encompasses case numbers 100 through 1299 (a) covering the period from April 14, 1954, through October 10, 1975. The second series begins anew with case number 100 and covers the period from October 17, 1975, through present.

The Precedential Decisions of Commissioner set forth interpretations of both procedural and substantive law governing adjudications under the Washington State Employment Security Act, Title 50 RCW. The Decisions are binding on Department adjudicators, administrative law judges of the Office of Administrative Hearings and the review judges of the Commissioner’s Review Office. The Decisions have been cited as persuasive authority by the Washington State trial and appellate courts.

Precedential Decisions of Commissioner must be read in the context of current statutes, regulations, and appellate court decisions.

The citation format for Precedential Decisions of Commissioner is as follows:
First SeriesIn re Staeger, Empl. Sec. Comm’r Dec. 100 (1954).
Second SeriesIn re Griggs, Empl. Sec. Comm’r Dec.2d 100 (1975).

Susan Carlson: Washington’s First Female Supreme Court Clerk

Our State Supreme Court recently appointed Deputy Clerk Susan Carlson as our State’s first female Supreme Court Clerk, replacing retired Clerk Ron Carpenter. The following is excerpted from the Supreme Court’s official announcement:

“The Washington Supreme Court’s nine justices have appointed the state’s first female Supreme Court Clerk in Washington State history. Deputy Clerk Susan Carlson, was sworn in today as the Court Clerk by Chief Justice Barbara A. Madsen and justices of the Court.  Carlson replaces long-time Court Clerk Ron Carpenter, who retired from the position at the end of March after serving 10 years in the role. She will serve as the 9th Supreme Court Clerk in Washington State history. The position of Supreme Court Clerk was created in 1934 to maintain the court’s records, files and documents. The clerk is also responsible for managing the court’s case flow, including the preparation of its calendars and docketing of all cases and papers filed with the court.  The Clerk’s Office manages the Court’s case flow and the filing of supporting documents for approximately 1,000 petitions and motions considered each year by the Washington Supreme Court. The Office also manages attorney licensing and discipline, and manages documents related to death-penalty cases filed with the Court. “I am honored to be selected to serve as the Supreme Court Clerk,” said Carlson of the appointment. “To say that I am excited to take on this role is an understatement and I look forward to serving the Court and the people of the State of Washington.”

Important Rule Change: Courts May Consider Unpublished Appellate Decisions

Beginning September 1 of 2016, Washington courts may choose to consider unpublished opinions of the Court of Appeals.  While such opinions would still be nonbinding, amendments to GR 14.1 would allow them to be “accorded such persuasive value as the court deems appropriate” – provided the citing party identifies the decision as unpublished and appends a copy to the pleading.  The proposed amendment and rationale can be read here – along with comments received regarding the changes.  The adopted rule may be found here.

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