Category Archives: Simplification

Courts are Dysfunctinal for Different Kinds of Litigants in Profoundly Different Ways

It seems to me that the discussions about how to make courts work again have suffered from a problem of fragmentation. While basically all courts operate under the same rules, based on the 1930′s Federal Rule project, there are now … Continue reading

Posted in Federal Courts, Foreclosure, Rules Reform, Simplification, Systematic Change | Leave a comment

Very Important Communications Research Released

This is one of the most important posts I have ever written.  I am honored to be authorized to post the communications research conducted by Lake Research Partners and the Torrance Group on civil legal aid and access to justice … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Counsel, Access to Justice Generally, Forms, Funding, Legal Aid, LSC, Self-Help Services, Simplification, Systematic Change | Tagged | 15 Comments

Richard Posner’s New Book Addresses Sources of Complexity in the Law

I have to admit that I am responding to the New York Times review of Posner’s new book, not the book itself. But I was fascinated by this distinction from the review. At the outset, Posner distinguishes between two kinds … Continue reading

Posted in Simplification | 2 Comments

More on the “Until Gideon” Symposium at Forham

At the Symposium, Earl Johnston presented on the concept of Civil Gideon, and I was one of the two responders.  As part of this presentation (and by e-mail before the meeting) he had presented some questions that he suggested would … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Counsel, Judicial Ethics, Self-Help Services, Simplification, Triage | Tagged | 2 Comments

English/Welsh Judges Issue SRL Handbook From Which the US Might Learn

A Committee of English and Welsh Judges have put together a handbook for what they call Litigants In Person, and we call the self-represented.  While the document has received some criticism, there are some elements that might be useful for … Continue reading

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Guest Blog on Australian Tribunal that Use Administrative Agency Approach In Many Traditionally Judicial Areas

After meeting Julie Grainger, a member of the Victorian (Australia) Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), I asked her to describe for this blog how the Tribunal works.  Its uses more of an administrative agency type approach in many substantive areas … Continue reading

Posted in Administative Proecdure, Simplification, Systematic Change | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Professor in Nederlands On Strategies for Access Change

I am just back from the International Legal Aid Group meeting in the Nederlands.  While I plan to share several ideas from the meeting, I want to start with some overall strategic thoughts from Prof. Maurits Barendrecht of HiiL/Tilburg University. … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Funding, Legal Aid, Simplification, Systematic Change | 2 Comments

My Simplification Paper Now Out

Just posted — my Drake Law Review paper on simplification: Some First Thoughts on Court Simplification: The Key to Civil Access and Justice Transformation. Here is the abstract: Given the discrepancy between access to justice needs and the resources that … Continue reading

Posted in Simplification, Systematic Change | 9 Comments

National Center for State Courts Strategic Campaign Prioritizes Access to Justice and Sets Rules Simplification as Objective

This is great news. The National Center for State Courts Board has just approved its Strategic Campaign for 2013-2016, and, under the title Solutions for Enhancing Access to Justice for All, it includes as one of its four key elements … Continue reading

Posted in Rules Reform, Simplification, Systematic Change | 1 Comment

Towards a New Accss-Friendly Rules Project

Here is a potentially transformative idea that I raised at the recent Symposium at Harvard Law School on Civil Gideon. Maybe it is time to rethink the Federal Rules Project. Back when the Federal Rules were first being put in … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Court Management, Simplification | 1 Comment

Thoughts from the Canadian Envisioning Equal Justice Summit — Parallel Paths to Innovation and Access

I am just back from Vancouver and the Canadian Bar Association Envisioning Equal Justice Summit.  My main conclusion is that the Canadians and the US are now on very similar and potentially supportive paths. The Summit was brought together to … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, International Cooperation, Simplification, Technology, Triage | Tagged | 2 Comments

Interesting Simplifiation/Right to Counsel Argument from Justice Sotamayor in Immigration Case

Yesterdays immigration opinion, MONCRIEFFE v. HOLDER, from the Supreme Court, holding possession of small amounts of marijuana outside the definition of “aggravated felony” ineligible for discretionary relief from deportation, contains an interesting nugget for possible citation in simplification and right … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Counsel, Immigration, Simplification, Supreme Court | Leave a comment

Report on Colorado Simplified Process Rule Option

In 2004 Colorado put in place statewide a Rule 6.1 permitting the parties to use a simplified trial process in certain relatively low-stake cases. A report on this experiment is now available here, and it is reported on in the … Continue reading

Posted in Research and Evalation, Simplification | Leave a comment

Canadian Court Rules Subcommittee Report Advocates Review of Rules from Point of View of the Self-Represented

The Canadian Federal Court Rules Committee Subcommittee on Global Review of the Federal Courts Rules makes an interesting recommendation: The Rules Committee should assess all existing rules from the standpoint of access to justice, particularly by self-represented parties, with a … Continue reading

Posted in Simplification, Systematic Change | Tagged | Leave a comment

Maybe These Poster Proposals from SRLN Will Stimulate Ideas

As I have previously blogged, this Friday is the deadline for Poster Proposals for the open gathering in Chicago on Research into Access to Justice to be held on December 7.  Proposals should be sent to by Friday, November … Continue reading

Posted in Research and Evalation, Simplification, SRL Statistics, Triage | 2 Comments