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Materials About the Federal Rules

The materials listed below, produced or made available by the Center, are related to the Federal Rules of Procedure (civil, criminal, evidence, appellate, and bankruptcy).

For a list of projects or other reports of FJC research that the Center has published, click on Research Projects or Reports and Studies.

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Interim Progress Report on Class Action Fairness Act Study

This interim progress report on the impact of the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 was presented to the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules on May 22, 2006. The report examines class action filing trends from July 1, 2001 through June 30, 2005 in three federal district courts and includes data on the first four months after CAFA went into effect. Future reports will present the results of statistical tests of the impact of CAFA on federal courts across the country.

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 May 22, 2006
Research on Appeals of Attorney-Fee and Merits Decisions (Fed R Civ P 58(c)(2)) as Presented to the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules in May 2006

In early 2006, the Federal Judicial Center examined the prevalence of the use of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 58(c)(2), and the circumstances under which appeals of judgments on the merits and decisions regarding attorney fees can occur at the same time. Two resulting memoranda were presented to the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules in May 2006.

  • Coinciding appeals of a judgment on the merits and a decision regarding attorney fees, March 7, 2006, 6 pages
  • Fed.R.Civ.P. 58(c)(2), January 30, 2006, 2 pages
Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 58 May 1, 2006
Attorney Choice of Forum in Class Action Litigation: What Difference Does It Make?

This article presents a post-Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 (CAFA) discussion and analysis of data presented previously in An Empirical Examination of Attorneys' Choice of Forum in Class Action Litigation (FJC 2005). Data originated from a national random survey of 728 attorneys who represented plaintiffs and defendants in 621 closed class action cases. New discussion centers on the assumptions underlying CAFA about differences in federal and state court treatment of class actions. New data are presented on the types of cases (nature of suit) and the state of filing for survey cases that were originally filed in state court. From 81 Notre Dame Law Review 591 (January 2006).

Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 January 1, 2006
Citing Unpublished Opinions in Federal Appeals

At its June 2004 meeting, the Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure asked the Appellate Rules Advisory Committee to ask the Federal Judicial Center to conduct empirical research that would help the Standing Committee in its consideration of a proposed new Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 32.1, which would permit attorneys and courts in federal appeals in all circuits to cite the court's unpublished opinions. The Center's research effort consisted of three components: (1) a survey of judges, (2) a survey of attorneys, and (3) a survey of case files. The rule, as amended and approved by the Judicial Conference in September 2005 and approved by the Supreme Court in April 2006, applies only to opinions issued in 2007 or later. The rule became effective December 1, 2006.

Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure, Fed. R. App. P. 32.1 December 21, 2005
An Empirical Examination of Attorneys' Choice of Forum in Class Action Litigation

This article presents attorney responses to a national random survey of 728 attorneys who represented plaintiffs and defendants in 621 recently closed class action cases. Those cases had been filed in or removed to federal courts, and the article focuses on attorneys' reasons for choosing a state or federal forum. The article also tracks the differences in rulings in state and federal courts on class certification, motions to dismiss, settlement review, and attorney fee awards in a subset of the 621 cases.

Note that this article draws on the same data examined in Attorney Reports on the Impact of Amchem and Ortiz on Choice of a Federal or State Forum in Class Action Litigation (2004).

A post-Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) article on the same data Attorney Choice of Forum in Class Action Litigation: What Difference Does it Make? (2006) is also available.

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 December 17, 2005
Citations to Unpublished Opinions in the Federal Courts of Appeals

The Appellate Rules Advisory Committee has written a new Rule 32.1 which permits attorneys and courts in federal appeals in all circuits to cite unpublished opinions. At its June 2004 meeting, the Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure asked the Appellate Rules Advisory Committee to ask the Federal Judicial Center to conduct empirical research that would yield results helpful to the Standing Committee's consideration of the proposed rule. The Center's research effort consisted of three components: (1) a survey of judges, (2) a survey of attorneys, and (3) a survey of case files. This report was presented to and considered by the Standing Committee during its June 15-16, 2005 meeting, at which it approved the Advisory Committee's proposed rule for consideration by the Judicial Conference at its September 2005 meeting.

This report was subsequently published as Citing Unpublished Opinions in Federal Appeals (2005).

Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure, Fed. R. App. P. 32.1 June 1, 2005
Securities Class Action Certification and Settlement: Publication Notice [Spanish-language version] Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 May 10, 2005
Securities Class Action Certification and Settlement: Full Notice Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 May 10, 2005
Securities Class Action Certification and Settlement: Publication Notice Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed. R. Civil P. 23 May 10, 2005
Citations to Unpublished Opinions in the Federal Courts of Appeals: Preliminary Report

The Appellate Rules Advisory Committee has proposed a new Rule 32.1, which would permit attorneys and courts in federal appeals in all circuits to cite unpublished opinions. At its June 2004 meeting, the Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure asked the Appellate Rules Advisory Committee to ask the Federal Judicial Center to conduct empirical research that would yield results helpful to the Standing Committee's consideration of the proposed rule.

The Center's research effort consists of three components: (1) a survey of judges, (2) a survey of attorneys, and (3) a survey of case files. This preliminary report, which includes analyses of all responses in the survey of judges, almost all of the responses in the survey of attorneys, and a majority of cases in the survey of case files (9 out of 13 circuits), was presented to the Appellate Rules Advisory Committee on April 18, 2005. The authors expect to have all data analyzed and a complete report for the Standing Committee on Rules meeting on June 15-16, 2005.

Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure, Fed. R. App. P. 32.1 April 14, 2005

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