Sunday, March 08, 2009

Internet access to unpublished opinions

As I indicated earlier this weekend, it now appears that three of the four Courts of Criminal Appeals plus the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces make all of their opinions available on the Internet. The only outlier is the Navy-Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals which, curiously, has led the way among the CCAs in making its oral arguments available on the web.

Interestingly, there's a federal statute that requires "each circuit" to establish and maintain "a website that contains the following information or links to websites with the following information: . . . Access to the substance of all written opinions issued by the court, regardless of whether such opinions are to be published in the official court reporter, in a text searchable format." E-Government Act of 2002, Pub. L. No. 107-347, § 205, 116 Stat. 2899, 2913. Should Congress amend the E-Government Act to bring the military appellate courts within its scope?


Anonymous said...

NMCCA has enough clerks working there that you'd think this would be a no brainer.

Mike "No Man" Navarre said...

Anon 206:

You have to realize that there is probably a half decade recovery period from what we'll call the Carstenzoic Era. During that time it was, well let's just say that it sent Clerk's offices back to the stone age. The guy used a walker and cane to run the PRT course, can you imagine how long it took him to get opinions all the way from the Clerk's office to Code 45-let alone to the information superhighway?

Anonymous said...

Recovery? Somehow we are back in the era. Kind of like a horrible Jurassic Park rip-off for the CCA. I expect opinions now to be written in the prose of the seminal book of our lifetime: "Me Write Book: It Bigfoot Memoir"

The next opionins we are likely to see: Big G wins, okay. Me go sleep now.

Anonymous said...

No "game" Man,

Obviously you are still smarting from by devastating cross-over dribble, my “can’t miss” turn-around fade-away jumper, and my stifling defense. I’d say my first stint on NMCCA was more akin to a new millennium than from some prehistoric era.

The Professor

Anonymous said...

Note from NMCCA's 2009 decision page says:

Opinions - This section will include final published and unpublished opinions. Published opinions are binding precedent upon this court. Opinions that are unpublished but authored may be cited as persuasive authority. Per Curium opinions (which are neither binding nor persuasive precedent), will not be posted to this web site unless the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces grants a petition for review of that case.

I now see that both Burk opinions are posted. Small steps?