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The Cockle Bur Blog

Legal minds on legal matters and whatever else strikes our fancy.

13 Jun, 2018

Supreme Court Electronic Filing FAQs

Author |Supreme Court Rules|0 Comments


Who is required to file electronically?

Any party represented by an attorney in the Supreme Court.

Are pro se filers eligible to file through the system?


Will documents submitted on paper by pro se filers be made available on the Court’s docket?

Yes. These filings will be scanned by the Clerk’s Office and made available on the Court’s docket. […]

7 Jun, 2018

Supreme Court Petition Checklist

Author |Preparing Your Brief|0 Comments

Pilots are required to learn and use checklists for every aspect of flight, from preparing for take-off to dealing with equipment malfunction. It was a checklist that helped Captain Chelsey “Sully” Sullenberger and co-pilot Jeffery Skiles safely land their US Airways flight in the Hudson River after the plane’s engines were damaged by a flock […]

15 May, 2018

Supreme Court Rules on Sports Betting – Now Up to State Law

Author |Supreme Court|0 Comments

Congress can regulate sports gambling directly, but if it elects not to do so, each State is free to act on its own…. Our job is to interpret the law Congress has enacted and decide whether it is consistent with the Constitution. PASPA is not.  — Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr
The Supreme Court on Monday […]

11 May, 2018

May 11th: Recently Filed Petition

Author |Briefs Filed|0 Comments

Morrison v. Quest Diagnostics Inc., filed on May 11th


To read this Supreme Court petition, click the heading to open this post, then follow the link!

10 May, 2018

Supreme Court Justice Kennedy to Retire Next Month?

Author |Supreme Court|0 Comments


“I believe we’re going to have another Supreme Court justice this year. I think Kennedy is going to retire around sometime early summer.”

– Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev.

Rumors of Justice Kennedy’s impending retirement have persisted for the last three years.  With six weeks left in the 2017 term – Kennedy’s 30th year as a member of […]

7 May, 2018

Kennedy Retirement Watch

Author |Supreme Court|0 Comments

As the October 2017 term winds down, all eyes are on Justice Kennedy for any indications that he will announce his retirement from the bench. While there have been no new rumors or public signs that he intends to retire, both Republicans and Democrats have been monitoring the situation closely as a vacancy would likely […]

24 Apr, 2018

Formulating the Question Presented

Author |Preparing Your Brief|0 Comments

 “I have always been much better at asking questions than knowing what the answers were.” – Bill James, baseball historian
There may be no more daunting task in all Supreme Court practice than distilling a 9,000 word cert. petition down to one or two questions presented. This level of difficulty should come as no surprise—only the U.S. […]

20 Apr, 2018

Supreme Court Electronic Filing: Waivers and Extensions

Author |Legal Brief Printing|0 Comments


Generally, filings submitted by parties represented by counsel must be submitted through the Court’s electronic filing system. When filing any type of brief, electronic filing is in addition to paper copy filing.  However, the following seven documents are submitted only through the Court’s electronic filing system:

Motions for an extension of time (and responses thereto);

17 Apr, 2018

Conference Timing Through The End Of The Term

Author |Supreme Court Rules|0 Comments

We are getting near the end of the Court’s October 2017 Term. Some petitioners and respondents might be thinking about timing their filings to either have the case considered this term, or have it carried through the summer and into next fall.

The last conference for this term is June 21st, and the last paid-petition distribution […]

9 Apr, 2018

Pointed QPs

Author |Preparing Your Brief|0 Comments

“Brevity is the soul of wit.” ― William Shakespeare
The questions presented page is assuredly the most important element of a Supreme Court petition.  Justices can reject an entire case based on review of the questions alone.  Rule 14.1 provides that they should be “expressed concisely in relation to the circumstances of the case, without unnecessary […]