Saturday, April 14, 2007

Court Insiders to Explain Supreme Court Statistics and Operating Procedures

Lisa E. Hobbs, General Counsel of the Supreme Court of Texas, and former rules attorney, will interpret the supreme court's caseload, process, and disposition data and its implications for appellate attorneys later this month. Ms. Hobbs will give a presentation titled "The Numbers Cruch: Supreme Court Statistics and What they Mean for the Practitioner," at a Bar sponsored CLE event to be held in Austin, Texas.

Blake A. Hawthorne, the newly appointed Clerk of the Supreme Court, will provide a "peek behind the curtain" of the Supreme Court and shed light on its internal operating proceedures.

Also scheduled to speak are former Chief Justice Thomas R. Phillips (on evolving notions of no evidence) and two current members of the state's highest court for civil appeals: Nathan L. Hecht and Justice Paul W. Green. Justice Hecht, who has recently been at the center of a controversy regarding politicking from the bench (vocal public support for the ill-fated candidacy of Harriet Miers, which triggered an ethics inquiry by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct) and acceptance of donations to his campaign chest and legal defense fund from a PAC closely connected to a party in a currently pending case from which he has not recused himself. Justice Hecht will speak on forthcoming changes to the rules of procedure (promulgated by the Supreme Court in its policymaking capacity for the state judiciary), and changes in the rules of evidence.

A staff attorney, Amy J. Schumacher, will provide an overview of the issues currently prending before the Texas Supreme Court. Leading appellate practitioners will offer advice on how to draft effective petitions for review, replies, and briefs on the merits.

The conference, bannered PRACTICE BEFORE THE TEXAS SUPREME COURT, is jointly sponsored by the State Bar of Texas and the Appellate Section of the State Bar, and will be held at Omni Hotel in Downtown Austin on April 27, 2007.

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