Monday, August 22, 2016

Articles of appellate note

Today's DJ features the Appellate Zealots' column, SLAPPing a mixed cause of action OK'd, about the Baral v. Schnitt opinion: "the Supreme Court decided that an anti-SLAPP motion may be brought against the portion of a mixed cause action that arises from protected rights. It based its decision partly on policy, agreeing that allowing a plaintiff to hide an attack on protected rights within a broader cause of action invites artful pleading, and noting that the Legislature was intent on stomping out litigation over protected speech and petition rights at an early stage. It also found support in the statutory language, because the Legislature called an anti-SLAPP motion a "motion to strike," and motions to strike traditionally have been allowed to attack discrete claims within a cause of action."

And today's DJ also presents For whom the 'death knell doctrine' tolls in state courts, by Zareh Jaltorossian and Jeffrey Fuchsman, about Young v. REMX Inc.: "Young confirms that the death knell doctrine requires a genuine "death." The challenged order must have finally disposed of all class/representative claims. In other words, the claims of the absent class members must suffer a knock-out - merely being down for the count is not enough. In the end, Young's bright-line holding enhances the clarity and certainty in this area of law, something that in the long run will benefit all litigants."

On the other side of the country, the NYLJ offers How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Brief, which contains much advice and insight on brief writing:
First and foremost, embrace criticism. Our mission as attorneys and writers is to persuade a human being who has normal conversations with people when she's not in a courtroom. If the person reviewing your work says she does not understand something, then it is not clear enough and it must be changed, not defended. The judge, or more likely her clerk who is going to be reading the thing will not understand it either, and it is unlikely that she will have or take any extra time to try. A written product is always a draft until it sees the light of day through someone else's eyes, and that is when it begins to blossom. So savor the feedback, even if it has the unpleasant scent of criticism.