Civ Pro - Fall 2004 - Rachlinski

Civ Pro - Fall 2004 - Rachlinski - PLEADINGS RULES IN...

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PLEADINGS RULES IN GENERAL A. Authority of the FRCP 1. Relevant Statutes a. Rules of Decision Act (RDA) – Laws of the several states, except where the Constitution or treaties of the US or acts of Congress otherwise require or provide, shall be regarded as rules of decision in civil actions in the courts of the US, in cases where they apply i. If the issue’s substantial, use the appropriate state law ii. According to RDA, in Si bbach , if the law was substantive, Illinois DC would apply Indiana law, where the action took place (physical examination) b. Conformity Act – REPEALED – initially held that procedural laws would be dictated by the State in which the DC sat (overruled by REA – more detailed) i. Further overruled by Sibbach b/c there’s grey area b/w substantive and procedural law c. Rules Enabling Act (REA) – States that FRCP shall neither abridge, enlarge, nor modify the substantive rights of any litigant (FRCP 35, 37) i. This can apply to important (substantive) procedural rights , leading the Illinois Court to apply its own law (FRCP Invalid, RDA Invalid) 2. Substance v. Procedure ( Sibbach ) a. FRCP is not supposed to abridge, enlarge, nor modify the substantive rights of any litigants b. SIBBACH (Physical Exam) – Lawyer changes ‘substantial’ to ‘important’ and creates a new category that falls between procedure and substantive i. If a rule is important and procedural, it is essentially banned by Congress (which would allow IL law to be applied) ii. SC held that rule 35 was PROCEDURAL and therefore valid – raised the standard for what ‘substantial’ meant (no grey- zone) c. Procedural Test – Whether rule regulates procedure – judicial process for enforcing rights and duties recognized by substantive law and for justly administering remedy and redress for disregard or infraction of them 3. Purpose of FRCP – UNIFORMITY / REFORM (discovery) 1
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COMPLAINTS (RULE 8) A. Elements of a Proper Complaint 1. Three Basic Requirements for filing a complaint (8a) a. Statement of grounds upon which the court’s jurisdiction depends (why does court have jurisdictional authority) b. Brief statement for basis for relief (why you want it) c. Demand for relief P seeks (what you want) i. Can use “if-unless” form – (P has burden for ‘if’ and D has burden for ‘unless’) ii. As many claims that you want (limited by rule 11, though) via 18a / 8e2 2. Adequate statement for basis of relief a. Statements can be vague: Put in enough to establish factual basis for claim, but not so much to be refuted a. Put in a very large number of claims to a) push your hands at the negotiating table; b) scare tactic; c) to not limit $ (don’t need to state any amount) b. P may sometimes have to specify costs related to medical expenses (to differentiate b/w other costs), but that’s it b. UNLESS IT’S FRAUD (9b) – In all averments of fraud/mistake, the circumstances constituting fraud or mistake shall be stated with particularity. Malice, intent, knowledge, and other condition
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This note was uploaded on 04/26/2008 for the course LAW civpro taught by Professor Clermont during the Fall '06 term at Cornell.

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Civ Pro - Fall 2004 - Rachlinski - PLEADINGS RULES IN...

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