The Year of the Patent

Possibly due to its eight Justice configuration, the Supreme Court heard a unique slate of cases this term with no noted landmark cases or decisions.  Then again perhaps landmark is in the eye of the beholder.  This term the Supreme Court heard six patent cases which conceivably is the most such cases the Supreme Court has heard…

Opinion Stats: Cooper v. Harris and Word Count Comparison for 5/22/2017

Cooper v. Harris Opinion Oral Argument Kagan Majority Sentences 718 Words 9826 Characters 49263 Syllables 15499 Polysyllables 1632 Words per sentence 13.685 Syllables per sentence 21.586 Syllables per word 1.577 Thomas Concurrence Sentences 20 Words 262 Characters 1246 Syllables 384 Polysyllables 43 Words per sentence 13.1 Syllables per sentence 19.2 Syllables per word 1.466 Alito…

Opinion Stats: Water Splash

Alito Majority Opinion Sentences 256 Words 3042 Characters 15199 Syllables 4828 Polysyllables 581 Words per sentence 11.883 Syllables per sentence 18.859 Syllables per word 1.587 Oral Argument Oral Argument: Order of Speaking

The First Batch of Decisions Each Term

Through the first thirty-five slip-opinions of the Supreme Court’s 2016 term there are notable similarities and differences from the Court’s prior terms.  All decisions so far this term were determined by eight Justices or fewer as Justice Gorsuch has yet to sign on to a majority or separate slip-opinion (Beckles v. United States, for instance…

Easy Reading (By Supreme Court Standards)

Supreme Court briefs are team efforts usually with a main coordinating partner/attorney who is known as the “counsel of record.”  Although the number of attorneys staffing briefs varies, at the Supreme Court level the number of attorneys listed on the brief is often more than five and can be upwards of ten.  This does not…

Attorneys and Firms in the Supreme Court 2016

The Supreme Court wrapped up oral arguments for the 2016 term on April 26, 2017 with arguments in Sandoz Inc. v. Amgen and Maslenjak v. United States. These marked the 63rd and 64th arguments the Justices heard this term – down five from the 69 arguments the Justices heard a year prior.  While the Court…

The Justices in Oral Arguments 2016

Supreme Court oral arguments are the only times that litigators directly and verbally interact with the Justices about pending cases.  The scholarship on whether these arguments factor into decision outcomes is mixed with some suggesting that the Justices come into oral arguments with predefined views in most cases while others suggesting that a variety of…

How Justice Thomas’ Discontent Channels Justice Douglas

Over the past year the Supreme Court has in many ways lacked consistency. Its membership has changed, there was a long period of uncertainty as to the future ideological balance of the Court, and with this uncertain future the Court looked like it might make its first strong shift to the left since the Warren…

Justices, Tenure, and What to Expect Moving Forward

A ninth Justice sits on the Supreme Court today for oral arguments for the first time in over a year.  Justice Gorsuch at 49 years of age has the potential to fill the seat previously occupied by Justice Scalia for years to come.  Gorsuch is on the younger end of the age spectrum for Supreme…

Below the Surface of the Gorsuch Confirmation Hearings

Justice Gorsuch was confirmed to the Supreme Court after a relatively quick and seamless confirmation process.  Much went into this process, however, and even though these hearings have become more or less a formality, they are a process that involves much preparation and an extensive time commitment.  Justice Gorsuch’s answers to questions were prototypical of…