skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 66258 Find in a Library
Title: SPECIAL MASTERS IN INSTITUTIONAL LITIGATION
Journal: AMERICAN BAR FOUNDATION RESEARCH JOURNAL  Volume:1979  Issue:3  Dated:(1979)  Pages:543-569
Author(s): S J BRAKEL
Corporate Author: American Bar Foundation
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 27
Sponsoring Agency: American Bar Foundation
Chicago, IL 60611
Type: Historical Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE ORIGIN, FUNCTIONS, AND SPECIAL PROBLEMS RELATED TO THE USE OF SPECIAL MASTERS IN INSTITUTIONAL LITIGATION ARE DISCUSSED. LEGISLATIVE MANDATES AND POTENTIAL RESEARCH ISSUES ARE HIGHLIGHTED.
Abstract: LITIGATION CONCERNING CONDITIONS IN SUCH INSTITUTIONS AS PRISONS AND MENTAL HOSPITALS HAS INCREASED IN THE PAST DECADE. INCREASINGLY, THE COURTS ARE RESORTING TO SPECIAL MASTERS TO ASSIST IN IMPLEMENTING INSTITUTIONAL REFORM. WHILE THE USE OF MASTERS BY COURTS IS A FIRMLY ESTABLISHED TRADITION, THE ROLE ASSIGNED TO MASTERS IN THE INSTITUTIONAL CONTEXT IS AN EXTRAORDINARLY BROAD AND INTRUSIVE ONE. AS A RESULT, SERIOUS QUESTIONS HAVE ARISEN ABOUT THE APPLICABILITY AND SUFFICIENCY OF THE TRADITIONAL RATIONALES AND RESTRAINTS. TYPICALLY, SPECIAL MASTERS ARE BROUGHT INTO CASES TO EXAMINE THE TOTALITY OF INSTITUTIONAL CONDITIONS. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT IN VIOLATIONS OF THE EIGHTH AMENDMENT IS OFTEN INVOLVED. THE USE OF SUCH PERSONNEL STEMS FROM THE OLD ENGLISH EQUITY PROCEDURE IMPLEMENTED DURING THE 14TH AND 15TH CENTURIES. TODAY, TERMS DESIGNATING SUCH PERSONS INCLUDE STANDING MASTERS, MAGISTRATES, MARSHALLS, MONITORS, AND OMBUDSMEN. RULE 53 OF THE FEDERAL RULES OF CIVIL PROCUDER PRESENTS THE MODERN FORMULATION AND ESSENCE OF THE MASTER CONCEPT. THE LANDMARK CASE CONCERNING THE MASTER FUNCTION IS KIMBERLY V. ARMS (1889). IN ADDITION, A FEW SUPREME COURT CASES INDICATE THE APPROPRIATE CIRCUMSTANCES FOR MASTER INVOLVEMENT. NEVERTHELESS, THE PRECISE CONSTRAINTS ON WHAT THE MASTER MAY DO REMAIN VAGUE. RECEIVERSHIP AND CIVIL RIGHTS CASES FREQUENTLY INVOLVE SPECIAL MASTERS. AREAS THAT MERIT FURTHER EMPIRICAL STUDY INCLUDE THE REQUISITE CIRCUMSTANCES, KINDS OF CASES, POWERS, STANDARDS, AND CRITERIA FOR EVALUATION OF SPECIAL MASTERS. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED--LWM).
Index Term(s): Court orders; Court personnel; Judicial decision compliance; Lawsuits; Master (court-appointed); Ombudsmen
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=66258

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.