U.S. Fifth Circuit - The FindLaw 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

July 2011 Archives

Avoid Improper Joinder: Name the Correct Defendant

Remember 2007? When foreclosure was king, and raising the debt ceiling, like going to the dentist, was one of those unpleasant tasks that you grudgingly faced every few years?

Those times were followed by a collective realization that everyone would be happier if mortgage servicers could work out payment plans with defaulting borrowers to avoid kicking families out of their homes and into court. Of course, nothing is ever easy when mortgages are involved, and the workout deals ultimately generated loads of litigation for lawyers.

Fifth Circuit Accepting Comments to Proposed Rule Until July 25

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is seeking comments regarding a proposed amendment to Rule 41.3, Effect of Granting Rehearing En Banc. The comment period closes on July 25, 2011.

Currently, Rule 41.3 states, "If the court grants a petition for en banc rehearing, the panel opinion is vacated and the mandate is stayed." The proposed amendment would add, "If, after voting a case en banc, the court lacks a quorum to act on the case for 30 consecutive days, the case is automatically returned to the panel, the panel opinion is reinstated as an unpublished (and hence nonprecedential) opinion, and the mandate is released. To act on a case, the en banc court must have a quorum consisting of a majority of the en banc court as defined in 28 U.S.C. § 46(c)."

Lambda Legal Appealing Fifth Circuit Decision in Adar v. Smith

Same-sex couples around the United States have a new reason to brush up on the Full Faith and Credit Clause. On Tuesday, Lambda Legal filed a writ of certiorari in Adar v. Smith, the same-sex adoption case in which the Fifth Circuit ruled that the Full Faith and Credit Clause applies only to state courts, not state government officials.

The case involves same-sex parents Oren Adar and Mickey Smith, who sought an updated birth certificate for their Louisiana-born son after adopting him in New York, in 2006. Despite a Louisiana law that requires a state official to make a new record reflecting adoptive parents’ names upon receipt of a certified adoption decree, Louisiana State Registrar Darlene Smith refused the request because Louisiana does not permit unmarried couples to adopt jointly.

Texas Redistricting Lawsuits Head to 5th Circuit, Date Set

Texas redistricting lawsuits are before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, reports The New York Times.

The legislators in the State of Texas, under a Republican supermajority, redistricted this year, carving out boundaries for the Texas Legislatures, the State Board of Education and Congress.

Shortly thereafter came the lawsuits, in cities and courts across Texas, including Austin, Sherman, McAllen and San Antonio, reports The Times.

5th Circuit Judges and Oil: The Duty to Recuse and Divest

New Orleans is a key area for the oil industry. So it is really fair that the judges on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals have investments in oil, when it's highly possible that they may be hearing cases involving oil companies?

Many environmentalists are arguing that the Fifth Circuit Judges aren't necessarily impartial, reports The New York Times.

Remember that the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is based out of New Orleans.