One Hand Clapping

Focus On Efficiency Leads To Fewer Trials

, The Connecticut Law Tribune

I read an interesting essay on judging the other day. The author noted that the image of a federal trial judge sitting dispassionately at trial calling balls and strikes should be supplanted by a new image: the manager, sitting by his or her computer, checking out case reports and researching case law on pending motions. That is not a reassuring image. Many reasons are given for the vanishing trial. Filings in the district court have increased, but the number of cases going to trial has decreased. There have been no new rules of procedure that would account for the decline in trials. The increases in filings suggest we are more litigious than ever.

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