Hawaii’s new Associate Justice of the Hawaii Supreme Court, Justice Michael D. Wilson, joined the HSBA’s Appellate Section at is November meeting. Justice Wilson discussed topics including writs of certiorari to the Hawaii Supreme Court, an insider’s view of the life of a court opinion, and the appellate lawyer as “progenitor.”
Justice Wilson offered valuable reminders and advice, including:
- An application for writ of certiorari to the court must be filed within 30 days of the ICA’s judgment or dismissal order (except that one 30-day extension is permitted);
- The HAWSCT must act within 30 days after an objection to the writ is filed or could have been filed;
- In drafting its opinion, the court may or will consider (as applicable) a variety of issues including statutory interpretation, factual interpretation, constitutional issues, review of case law, legislative history, and whether the record/facts are dispositive;
- The appellate lawyer has the opportunity to establish the character of the case (personal, financial, philosophical) by the way she presents the case on appeal -- An appellate lawyer “gives birth” to the case in the appellate court;
- Oral argument is like back lot basketball – always keep your eye on the ball;
- The story and the record are already developed by the time the court hears oral arguments, so the case may be more focused at this stage;
- An appellate lawyer “gives birth” to the case in the appellate court;
- Every appellate case is a statement on where we are headed as a society;
- Cert applications are decided based on a random rotation of assigned justices – the assigned judge will make a recommendation whether to accept the case and circulate a memo to the rest of the justices.
Mahalo to Justice Wilson for joining the Section!