Thursday, March 24, 2016

Reversed And Remanded


  • Here's a look at how often Nevada's federal court judges are overturned. [RJ]
  • The rise of medical marijuana in Nevada means core complications in the employment law context. [RJ]
  • Would you rather improve the convention center or build a stadium? [Vegas Inc.]
  • The Nevada Ethics Commission has cleared North Las Vegas Mayor John Lee. [LasVegasNow]

35 comments:

  1. Is it just me or are those reversal rates not really that bad? 11% reversed that means 89% are okay--that's a B.

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  2. Isn't interesting how something as serious as a child porn investigation gets swept under the rug or ignored by NLMPD and FBI with John Lee? It is to me.

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  3. The numbers in the article on reversal rates are way off. The reporter ran a Westlaw report, but the judges actually handle something like 10 times as many cases as she reported. You have to run a report in PACER to find the more complete numbers. The reversals probably all show up in Westlaw, so the overall rate of reversal for cases handled is probably about 10 times less what was reported for all of the judges.

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    1. PACER says Judge Navarro, the least-reversed judge according to the article, has closed 2083 cases. With 2 reversals, that's 0.1%. PACER says Judge Jones, the most-reversed judge according to the article, has closed 4216 cases. With 38 reversals, that's 0.9%. That kind of puts it in perspective.

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    2. The PACER numbers include civil cases that settled and criminal cases in which there was a plea negotiation or the defendant entered a straight up plea of guilty (to get the acceptance of responsibility of credit). PACER is not a good reflection of reversal rates.

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    3. You have to at least count all appealable cases, which includes plea bargains that are at least collaterally attackable for ineffective assistance. Settled cases are a relatively small fraction. Also, the 9th is itself reversed 70-80% of the time, very often unanimously and summarily without argument, so getting reversed by the 9th is not a good way to identify a bad judge.

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    4. 7:08: 1. Collateral attacks are through habeas petitions, not appeals. 2. Plenty of cases settle. Last year 2,849 civil cases were resolved, but only about 1% went to trial. There were 506 criminal cases and only a fraction of those went to trial. 3. The 9th Circuit is not reversed 70 to 80% of the time. Last year the 9th Circuit completed over 12,000 cases. The Supreme Court has been hearing about 80 cases a year. Even if 100% of the cert. grants were in 9th Circuit cases, and 100% of the cert. grants resulted in reversal (neither of which is remotely close to true, but that's your best case scenario), there would only be reversals in less than 1% of the 9th Circuit cases. There are a handful of summary reversals each year, but not many. http://www.uscourts.gov/statistics-reports/statistical-tables-federal-judiciary-june-2015

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    5. 10:10,

      1. Collateral attacks on federal criminal cases are through habeas corpus motions in the underlying criminal case. Reviewable. Even if it were via separate petition, it would then be a civil case like federal habeas corpus petitions concerning state law convictions, which are also reviewable.
      2. You left out the vast middle that are neither settled nor tried but are resolved (or partially resolved) on dispositive motion practice. Reviewable.
      3. The 9th Circuit is reversed 70-80% (or more) of the time where it is reviewed. The district court's rulings are almost all appealable as of right. The 9th's aren't. No matter how wrong the 9th is, the Supreme Court only takes 70 or so cases a year. It ignores most errors of the appellate courts because it doesn't have time for them. It only takes cases of national importance or where there is a circuit split. It doesn't even take all of those.

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  4. Regardless of the numbers, District Court of Nevada is one of the most messed up federal courts in the west. I wish there were numbers about crazy Magistrate Judge Koppe

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    1. Makes Bonnie Bulla look like Learned Hand

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    2. This made me LOL. Plus, any joke using the name of Learned Hand gets extra props from me.

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  5. I have nothing to compare it to, but I will admit to heavily preferring the humble state courts over USDC. At least the judges in EJDC will issue an opinion on a motion. The delicate USDC flowers only bloom opinions for sexy cases.

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  6. Can the Bar please do something about the paralegals practicing law without a license? WTF?

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    1. I went against a local attorney that had 3-4 disbarred attorneys working as "paralegals." The lawyer that signed the briefs didn't know the case nearly as well as the "paralegals" that would get on the phone and try to argue the merits of their side's position.

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    2. Breaking the law; breaking the law.

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    3. Judge Kearns cares. He turned one into the bar for unauthorized practice of law.

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    4. Can the Bar please do something about anything unrelated to mishandling funds?

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    5. I don't see anything wrong with the guy using disbarred attorneys as paralegals. That actually seems pretty smart to me, as long as he's reviewing and responsible for their work product. I would have a problem if those paralegals started arguing the case or negotiating settlement terms, though.

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    6. Would you rather have the paralegal working on your case be a former attorney or someone who is a high school dropout who is a paralegal in name only?

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    7. HS dropout. At least they're inclined to realize when they don't know something, and will seek advice from their licensed attorney. Disbarred folks? There's a reason they're disbarred, and it wasn't because they were exceptional at practicing law.

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  7. Here, here. Judges don't give a shit either. Shocker!

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  8. http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/2016/mar/24/thomas-jefferson-law-school-verdict/

    Jury sided with Thomas Jefferson on former law student's claim of misrepresentation. Caveat Emptor.

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  9. I'm a long time family law lawyer and paralegals doing legal work is widely accepted - ghost writing, paralegals negotiating settlements and one company - equal rights for divorced father's doesn't even attempt to hide it - I've made a nice living partially from cleaning up their messes - idk why Bar does nothing

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    1. equal rights for divorced fathers is owned by attorney kurt harris since 2014

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  10. great. why are paralegals immune from breaking the law?

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  11. the Southern Nevada disciplinary panel is the biggest joke going. They are constantly allowing attorneys to steal from people and do nothing about it. Paralegal unauthorized practice of law is wrongfully ignored by the disciplinary panel, and it is a joke.

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    1. The Southern Nevada Disciplinary Panel has no authority to sanction paralegals for UPL. UPL is regulated by the Bar through the Court system. Learn what the Panel can (and cannot) do.

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    2. Glad to hear, so there is no reason for the disciplinary panel to not discipline unethical lawyers.

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    3. The panel can discipline the lawyer who supervises the paralegals and often does.

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    4. Go after paralegals on their own. They are the worse violators.

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    5. it is attorneys who own and run paralegal services in las vegas

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  12. I would be more prone to hire a lawyer who could admit to his love for one of my favorite shows. It is nice to hear of a softer side to lawyers. This could very well start something wonderful..
    Bothell Lawyers

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    1. Hey everybody look! Its an a**hole who provides "niche blog backlinking services and comenting [sic]" We should all welcome him here.

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    2. New BK Hottie

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  13. Until you mentioned that, I thought his link went to "Brothel lawyers." Figured someone from Pahrump was weighing in.

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