Performance of the Courts of Appeal

Fiscal Year 2015 - 2016

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GOAL 2: TO PROMOTE THE RULE OF LAW


Objective

2.4 To resolve cases expeditiously.

Intent of the Objective

Once an appellate court acquires jurisdiction of a matter, the validity of a lower tribunal’s decision remains in doubt until the appellate court rules. Delay adversely affects litigants. Therefore, appellate courts should assume responsibility for a petition, motion, writ, application, or appeal from the moment it is filed. Appellate courts should adopt a comprehensive delay reduction program designed to eliminate delay in each of the three stages of the appellate/supervisory process: record preparation, briefing, and decision-making. A necessary component of the comprehensive delay reduction program is the use of time standards to monitor and promote the progress of an appeal or writ through each of the three stages.

Responses To Objective

  1. Actions taken during FY 2015-2016 to expeditiously resolve cases.

QuestionIdQuestionStatementResponse
1010682518What actions, if any, did your court take during the reporting period to expeditiously resolve cases?Actions taken during FY 2015-2016 to expeditiously resolve cases.
(Hover on the chart for more information and click on the chart to see which courts chose that response.)
Actions taken during FY 2015-2016 to expeditiously resolve cases.
Additional actions taken by the courts to address this objective
1st Circuit
In an effort to expeditiously resolve matters pending before the court, the First Circuit heard various cases on Administrative Conference days and other business days in addition to its scheduled court days.
2nd Circuit
The Second Circuit continued an internal procedure of reporting the status of cases pending with no disposition over 60 days. All juvenile and custody matters are expedited to the first available docket after a reduced 30 day briefing period. Also, the number of extensions have been reduced, resulting in expeditious docketing. All juvenile and custody matters are expedited to the first available docket after a reduced 30-day briefing period.
3rd Circuit
The Third Circuit was current in hearing and rendering decisions on appeal and writ applications. There is little or no backlog in the court. The chief judge received timely and accurate monthly reports on the status of any holdover cases, including appeals and writ applications and monitors these closely through communication with the individual judges. The court continued to utilize its judges bulletin board, a computerized case and opinion tracking program, which reflects if a case is held over and acts as a constant reminder to each judge as to the status of their cases. The court now has two (2) full-time paralegals on its criminal staff and one (1) part-time paralegal on its civil staff who worked in liaison with the district courts and court reporters to ensure the timely and proper filing of records and tracks expedited criminal applications as well as civil writ applications. The paralegals also tracked the supplementation of appellate records. The court utilized its paralegals during court hearings to check in attorneys, time the oral arguments and to be the liaison between the judges, attorneys and clerk's office, thereby allowing the staff attorneys to continually research and write memoranda on writs and appeals uninterrupted. The court is in the process of developing its own case management system to provide for e-Notification and e-Filing.
5th Circuit
The Fifth Circuit added a special settings date to the calendar each month to quickly handle five judge panels or rescheduled arguments.
ResponseResponse_Court
Added more panels per cycle1 court (5th Circuit)
Additional actions taken by the courts to address this objective4 courts (1st Circuit, 2nd Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 5th Circuit)
Adopted and/or enforced policies regarding time extensions and abandoned appeals5 courts (1st Circuit, 2nd Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 4th Circuit, 5th Circuit)
Continued to address this objective through the actions indicated below, or implemented the following new actions to address this objective as indicated below:5 courts (1st Circuit, 2nd Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 4th Circuit, 5th Circuit)
Did not address this objective 0
Employed case managers to expedite court processes1 court (3rd Circuit)
Improved docketing and scheduling3 courts (1st Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 5th Circuit)
Improved process of opinion writing and review1 court (5th Circuit)
Improved the manual system of case processing1 court (1st Circuit)
Initiated or maintained summary dockets1 court (4th Circuit)
Initiated or promoted a mediation program(s)0
Installed or maintained an automated case management information system3 courts (1st Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 5th Circuit)
Planned the development of an automated case management system3 courts (1st Circuit, 2nd Circuit, 3rd Circuit)
Took steps to reduce cases under advisement1 court (3rd Circuit)

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