Monday, June 05, 2006

Oral argument in only 15% of Fourth Circuit cases?

This ACS post includes excerpts from an article about whether the federal appeals courts are too busy, which notes among other things that oral argument is heard in a smaller fraction of the cases, including as little as 15% in the 4th and 11th Circuits.

That seems like a strange statistic - is it evidence of a decline across all categories of cases, or merely a symptom of the explosion of criminal and prisoner litigation?

It seems to me that in just about every interesting civil case with lawyers on both sides, other than perhaps employment discrimination cases, there is oral argument, even in the Fourth Circuit. Perhaps I am mistaken.

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