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Federal Civil Practice
The newsletter of the ISBA’s Section on Federal Civil Practice

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Newsletter Articles From 2017

Boilerplate objections in discovery—Tread lightly By Stanley N. Wasser December 2017 Are you addicted to responding to discovery requests with boilerplate objections? Well your cure might be a read of Judge Mark W. Bennett’s March 13, 2017 Memorandum Opinion in Liguria Foods, Inc. v. Griffith Labs., Inc.
The Federal Arbitration Act versus the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: The future of arbitration clauses banning class action lawsuits By Thomas D. Cavenagh June 2017 Perhaps, given the precipitous decline of the number of trials taking place, we ought to begin thinking of the adversarial system as the alternative to the range of ADR processes presently available.
Has the Seventh Circuit finally (albeit indirectly) found that district courts should instruct juries that the preponderance of the evidence standard applies to claims under Section 1983 seeking punitive damages? Probably. By Iain D. Johnston December 2017 Although the Seventh Circuit has still not specifically held that the preponderance of the evidence standard applies to punitive damages for claims brought under Section 1983, Ramirez v. T&H Lemon, Inc. strongly signals that district courts should use this standard when instructing juries.
Judicial profile: Sara Ellis By Kathryn Kelly December 2017 With three years on the bench and a docket of over 300 cases, Judge Ellis was interviewed for this newsletter in order to share her practices with the profession.
Mandatory Initial Discovery Pilot Project By Deidre Baumann December 2017 Practitioners should keep in mind that the discovery obligations set forth in the Standing Order Regarding Mandatory Initial Discovery Pilot Project supersede the disclosures required by Rule 26(a)(1) and, with very limited exceptions, do not permit the parties to opt out.
The mystery behind electronically stored information discovery objections By Arsenio L. Mims April 2017 While the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow for the discovery of electronically stored information, the question practitioners are most commonly faced with is deciding what objections may be made during the discovery phase of litigation. And while the answers may seem straightforward, author Arsenio Mims shows they are anything but.
Overview of Interlocutory Appeals By Angela J. Rollins September 2017 This article provides a brief overview of this complex area of law, describing the various ways an aggrieved party may seek review of an interlocutory order.
The question of possession, custody, or control in production By George S. Bellas and Michael Rizo April 2017 Unfortunately, the F.R.Civ.P. do little to define the meaning of “possession, custody or control,” leaving parties to determine the definition from case law.
Upcoming amendments to the Federal Rules of Evidence By Patricia Smart June 2017 Changes to Rule 803(16) and Rule 902 of the Federal Rules of Evidence are scheduled to go into effect December 1, 2017. The amendments grow out of the increased reliance on electronically stored information.
What federal Magistrate Judges do and why they can or can’t do it By Hon. Tom Schanzle-Haskins April 2017 A summary of the basic rules regarding a Magistrate Judge’s authority to rule on matters which are deemed dispositive or non-dispositive under the Magistrate Judges Act and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.