O C F I T B L O G Legal The Case for Caution on Reacting to the Judicial Conference Press Release on Forum-Shopping

The Case for Caution on Reacting to the Judicial Conference Press Release on Forum-Shopping

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My co-bloggers Josh Blackman and Sam Bray have offered very different reactions to the Judicial Conference’s press release about a new policy on forum-shopping. Josh is strongly critical on a long list of procedural and substantive grounds,  while Sam welcomes the development.

My own view is that we need to wait, as we have no idea yet what the Judicial Conference has in mind.

In particular, we don’t know who wrote the press release or whether it accurately describes whatever the Judicial Conference has in mind.   It’s entirely possible that the “policy” is merely a recommendation that circuits and districts are free to ignore, as suggested by an unnamed judge who wrote in to David French and Sarah Isgur on the latest episode of Advisory Opinions.  It’s also possible that whatever was approved by the Judicial Conference is so soft a suggestion that it doesn’t even rise to a policy, which might explain why the text of any policy isn’t known.  We just don’t know yet.

Perhaps there’s a story here, and if so we can react when we have more details. But I think it may be prudent to wait.

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