Know Your Judge
New York Judge Reviews contains attorneys’ candid comments about the rules, preferences and idiosyncrasies of more than 300 sitting State Supreme Court Justices compiled from interviews with hundreds of litigators.
Learn from other attorneys’ experiences before your next appearance. Read their revealing quotes, which include:
- “He’s not a settler. His recommendations always lowball plaintiffs.”
- “He doesn’t talk case law. He’s more fact-oriented.”
- “Attorneys can evoke even more displeasure should they offer what he considers to be pedestrian or hackneyed legal argument.”
- “He expects an incredible amount of decorum in his courtroom during trial.”
An average of eight interviewees per State Supreme Court Judge were asked hard questions about judicial personality, intelligence, trial management, settlement skills, knowledge of the law, flexibility, bias, and more. The easy to read–and often entertaining–reviews of judges make this book a one-of-a-kind resource.
Two sample reviews from the book (Judge names omitted):
Temperament: “Cantankerous. Authoritarian. Overreacts.”
On the bench: “Bright, but he wastes his talent. Light on evidence.”
On trial: “Stickler for rules. Sua sponte objections.”
Proclivities: “He’s very evenhanded.”
Temperament: “He treats attorneys with the utmost respect. Patient. Good sense of humor.”
On the bench: “He doesn’t start anything until 11:00. You can be there all day on a motion. He may change his mind on oral argument. He’s not afraid of being reversed.”
On trial: “Speedy. He gave a time limit on summation. His rulings are all over.”
Settlements: “This judge evaluates cases a little bit closer than others.”
Adjournments: “One or two, then move it.”
Proclivities: “He’s more pro-plaintiff on the numbers, but even on the liability.”
Suggestions: “Be prepared to settle.”
The book also includes biographical profiles on more than 350 judges set out in a clear, easy-to-read format with the latest information about each judge:
- Personal history, including birth date, education, interests and activities
- Memberships in organizations and awards
- Political affiliation
- Recent publications
- Teaching and speaking engagements
- Recent cases
- Judge’s own rules
- Address and phone number, along with names of clerks and secretaries
Recent and comprehensive information on county and state courts in New York, including the names, addresses, phone numbers, and fax numbers of county officers and personnel related to court functions, court officers and personnel, and an up-to-date roster of the judges with their phone numbers.
The Judge reviews, Judge biographical information, and comprehensive court contact information make New York Judge Reviews an indispensable part of trial preparation that will help you:
- Formulate case strategies
- Unearth potential bias
- Assess the court’s flexibility
- Determine case-specific knowledge
- Uncover oral argument secrets
- Make the difficult decision to disqualify an assigned judge
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Mark Thompson graduated from Columbia Law School in 1983 and has been a journalist and writer ever since. He worked as an assistant editor at the Smithsonian Institute’s Wilson Quarterly
for several years before moving to Los Angeles to take a job at the Los Angeles Daily Journal, where he covered topics ranging from international law to the U.S. Supreme Court, wrote judicial profiles and edited the opinion section. Mr. Thompson left the Daily Journal in 1997 to work full time as a freelance writer and to complete a book, American Character, a biography of the eccentric journalist Charles Fletcher Lummis, which was published in the spring of 2001. His articles have appeared in many newspapers and magazines including the Atlantic Monthly, New Republic, Wall Street Journal, Economist and Far Eastern Economic Review.
Elizabeth Smith graduated from the University of Texas Law School. She has since clerked for a California judge, taught as an adjunct professor of criminal justice, and profiled numerous business executives for two Texas newspapers. Shortly after obtaining her second graduate degree in the 1990s, she spent 18 months working in-house for Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker, helping the firm prepare the two-volume treatise Employment Discrimination Law for publication by BNA. She has been designated an “honor roll” contributor to that treatise. For over ten years, Ms. Smith also provided political science and legal research to West Publishing’s Texas Politics series authored by Richard H. Kraemer and Charldean Newell. She later served as sole editor of a judge’s text on arbitration and sharpened her editing skills while working for newspapers in both Texas and California. In addition to her New York Judge Reviews and Court Directory writing tasks, Ms. Smith edits a variety of materials on a consulting basis and contributes freelance articles to a number of prestigious print and online publications, including The Wall Street Journal.
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