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Civil Procedure; Appeals

Civil Procedure

Attorneys may not ignore dispositive precedents in their briefs.

“When there is apparently dispositive precedent, an appellant may urge its overruling or distinguishing or reserve a challenge to it for a petition for certiorari but may not simply ignore it. We don’t know the thinking that led the appellants’ counsel in these two cases to do that. But we do know that the two sets of cases out of which the appeals arise, involving the blood-products and Bridgestone/Firestone tire litigations, generated many transfers under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, three of which we affirmed in the two ignored precedents. There are likely to be additional such appeals; maybe appellants think that if they ignore our precedents their appeals will not be assigned to the same panel as decided the cases that established the precedents. Whatever the reason, such advocacy is unacceptable.”


11-1665 & 08-2792 Gonzalez-Servin v. Ford Motor Co.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Barker, J., Posner, J.

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