"The DJ Blawter"
LA/SF Daily Journal
We At Least Call Him a Persistent Litigant?
28, 2009 10:40 AM
Schmier has lost his latest bid to force the California courts to publish all of
its appellate opinions. But U.S. Judge William Alsup stopped short of declaring
Schmier a vexatious litigant, as the California Supreme Court had requested.
Although Schmier has unsuccessfully challenged the courtís policy of issuing
unpublished opinions that canít be cited as precedent three times, each of
those lawsuits were filed in state court. Since this was the first time Schmier
challenged Californiaís no-citation rule in federal court, Alsup said he would
not require Schmier to get permission before filing future lawsuits.
In an order filed late Monday, Alsup rejected Schmierís claim that the rule
violates the First Amendmentís right to free speech. Alsup said the courts
have legitimate reasons for limiting the number of opinions that can be citable
as precedent. "Given the sheer volume of the state's caseload -- there are
600-plus trial judges in Los Angeles County alone -- it is worthwhile, as a
concession to the shortness of life, to reduce to a manageable level the
universe of opinions that the public, counsel and judges must sift to learn the
law,Ē Alsup wrote. Schmier will likely appeal Alsupís ruling to the 9th U.S.
Circuit Court of Appeals.