Associate, Adler Murphy & McQuillen LLP
|Chief Judge Wood, Judge Sykes, Judge Hamilton|
and ALA President Steve Pflaum enjoy a
lighter moment during the panel discussion.
|Association Vice President Michael|
Scodro and Seventh Circuit Executive
Collins T. Fitzpatrick.
Thereafter, Chief Judge Diane P. Wood along with Judges Diane S. Sykes and David F. Hamilton participated in a panel discussion. President Pflaum moderated the discussion, which addressed how appellate attorneys can focus issues on appeal. Chief Judge Wood noted that this was a "painful part" of appellate practice and urged appellate practitioners to take a careful look at what occurred at the trial court and the standard of review. Judge Sykes reiterated Chief Judge Wood's suggestion to look at the standard of review, which Judge Sykes noted is often decisive, and also encouraged attorneys to consider whether a trial court error was "an error of consequence." Judge Hamiliton offered the helpful reminder that attorneys on appeal should make sure that the any objection was preserved.
The panel discussed a number of other topics, including how many issues should typically be raised on appeal. The panel agreed that three to five issues should be the "rule of thumb." Judge Hamilton noted that the district court judges are "usually good" and unlikely to make 10 to 12 errors, and Judge Sykes later quipped, "nine grounds for reversal usually means none." The panel also offered tips for oral argument from both the appellants' and appellee's perspective. Chief Judge Wood noted that, if the district court wrote a sound opinion, "don't overlook this gift."
|Past ALA President Michael Rathsack, |
Paul Berks, and ALA Secretary Joanne Driscoll.
The ALA thanks the judges of the Seventh Circuit for an enjoyable and informative luncheon, as well as the many guests who attended.
DISCLAIMER: The Appellate Lawyers Association does not provide legal services or legal advice. Discussions of legal principles and authority, including, but not limited to, constitutional provisions, statutes, legislative enactments, court rules, case law, and common-law doctrines are for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice.