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A brief introduction to the statutory law, case law, and rules of court governing the U.S. courts of appeals. The author traces the appeals process and analyzes jurisdictional requirements for final and interlocutory appeals, criminal appeals, review by writ, and agency appeals. He provides an annotated bibliography. This publication is copyrighted by the author. Note: A "talking book" of this publication available from the Center's Information Services Office.

Superseded by A Primer on the Jurisdiction of the U.S. Courts of Appeals, Second Edition (2009).

In Print: Available for Distribution

The October 1988 conference for all federal appellate judges recognized the 200th anniversary of the federal judicial system. It provided an opportunity for collective analysis on the future of the appellate courts. This collection of essays by scholars and jurists on the future of the federal appeals courts are based on presentations given at the conference.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A report on the role of staff attorneys and special judicial panels in the selection of cases for nonargument disposition in the federal appellate courts. The report was based on an examination of administrative records and on interviews with clerks, senior staff attorneys, and judges. It discusses the criteria and methods used in selecting nonargument cases, and it presents the judges' views concerning the role of oral argument.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A report on procedures and standards used by the courts of appeals in the 1980s for deciding cases without oral argument. The authors discuss the responses of clerks of court to a survey on court practices and present statistical information along with a review of relevant local rules. The report discusses only the procedures developed for typical cases; it does not consider special procedures for pro se cases, nor does it attempt to evaluate the screening programs.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A description of a series of innovations adopted by the Ninth Circuit court of appeals from 1980 to 1982. The report outlines the court's Submission-Without-Argument and Prebriefing Conference programs and its modifications in the calendaring of oral arguments, and it reviews the effects of these innovations on case processing and the circuit's workload.

In Print: Available for Distribution

An investigation of problems encountered by the Ninth Circuit in its Appeals Without Briefs (AWB) Program, which was designed to expedite the disposition of civil appeals presenting comparatively straightforward issues. The author recommends solutions to the problems described by judges and counsel participating in the program and concludes that a revised AWB program could be successful.

In Print: Available for Distribution

An examination of the relative judicial and administrative burdens produced by various case types in the D.C. Circuit. The study confirms that the burden arising from the quantity of material presented to the court for consideration is greater in administrative agency cases than in other case types.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A description of how chief judges of the federal appellate courts discharged their administrative responsibilities in the early 1980s, based on interviews with chief judges, circuit executives, and other court personnel. The report discusses current trends in circuit administration and offers suggestions for how the chief judge's administrative role might be strengthened.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A description and analysis of the efforts of two courts of appeals to manage their case flow from the filing of the notice of appeal through the time the case is prepared for submission to the court. The author examined the procedures implemented in the Second and Eighth Circuits to control and reduce the time required to prepare cases for submission on appeal.

In Print: Available for Distribution

A 1981 examination of plans for limited publication of opinions in the federal courts of appeals. The report reviews the background of publication plans, analyzes the relation between the language of the plans and the publication rates of the circuit courts, empirically assesses the costs and benefits of limited publication, and offers a model rule for publication.

Reprinted from 48 University of Chicago Law Review 573 (1981).

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