5 Tips for Writing to the Court

Sheena R. Hamilton
Although judges make the final decisions, law clerks are a part of the process. Always consider the law clerk’s perspective.

Although judges make the final decisions, law clerks are a part of the process. Always consider the law clerk’s perspective.

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Each judge operates his or her chambers differently. For example, judges operate like producers on film sets, giving their preliminary thoughts and making all final decisions. Judges’ staffs do the leg work that judges would never have the time to do. Judicial assistants may handle scheduling, screen calls, or draft scheduling orders. Law clerks, however, might be analogous to film directors. Law clerks are generally responsible for research and writing. Judges may give instructions on how to decide some motions or appeals in advance, but occasionally law clerks draft bench briefs or opinions before judges read the briefs. Consequently, attorneys should consider the law clerk when writing to the court. Here are five tips to consider when writing to the clerks.

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