Tuesday, January 10, 2006

High Court Denies Review in Several Procedure Cases

The Court yesterday denied review in several cases relevant to civil procedure. Here are the cases followed by their questions presented:

Breezevale Ltd. v. Dickinson--1) To what extent, if any, is exercise of court's inherent power to sanction restricted by Seventh Amendment when case turned on disputed facts and witness credibility, and jury found bad faith conduct to be immaterial and entered judgment in favor of plaintiff? (2) Were petitioner's due process rights violated when trial court denied it evidentiary hearing prior to imposing both sanction of dismissal and multi-million dollar punitive sanction award for bad faith litigation? (3) Must bad faith conduct be material before court can exercise its inherent power to dismiss case and impose multi-million dollar punitive sanction award? (4) Was petitioner entitled, consistent with due process constraints on punitive damages, to more "exacting appellate review" of various punitive sanctions imposed by trial court than was performed by District of Columbia Court of Appeals?

Invention Submission Corp. v. Dudas--Should amendment of complaint after remand to remedy inadequate allegations of subject matter jurisdiction be allowed pursuant to Section 1653 of Judicial Code?

Lee v. 2050 S. Havana LLC--(1) Did fraud on part of petitioner's attorney result in denial of petitioner's due process and equal protection rights? (2) Did petitioner's refusal to sign proposed "global settlement" in investors' action against petitioner justify court's contempt citation?

Michau v. Jones--(1) Are employees of U.S. Supreme Court unreachable by writ of mandamus? (2) Was it unlawful for court employee to intercept correspondence to court official that was marked "personal" and posted by registered mail?

Rie v. Bank of America NA--What standard of review is applicable when court fails to give civil litigant warning regarding dangers and risks of self-representation in complex civil case, similar to warning given to criminal defendant that requires that defendant "be made aware of the dangers and disadvantages of self-representation, so that the record will establish that he knows what he is doing and his choice is made with eyes open"?


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