Thursday, January 20, 2011

Headnote of the Week

I found out this week why I have so many family law cases.  It's not really complicated, but without knowing the context of the courts, it's difficult to explain.  Basically, each judge has about 50-80 cases at a given time (remember, 5 judges on the Intermediate Court of Appeals means the Court has anywhere from 300-400 cases at a given time...all the time).  Anyway, there was some shifting among the judges because one judge on the ICA was nominated/confirmed to the Hawaii Supreme Court, another judge moved into the Chief Judge's role on the ICA, and new judges were nominated/confirmed to sit on the ICA.

Now, when all that happened, the former Chief Judge (who went to the Supreme Court) did not finish all his cases.  As I've bitched about a dozen times explained before, family law cases suck.  No one wants to work on them.  Anyway, since the former Chief Judge didn't finish all his family law cases, the new judges to the Court got stuck with them.  This means that our entire docket sheet right now is filled with backlogged family law cases.  I worked on a case recently that has been sitting here since 2006!

Since my eyes have been going numb over facebook, gchat, and planning vacations family law cases, today's headnote makes perfect sense.  Also, it should make sense to anyone who has ever been divorced.  Remember, these headnotes are quotes from real cases:

Just and equitable division of property in divorce action is just as likely not to be equal.
Root v. Root, 65 P.3d 41 (Wyo. 2003)

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