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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 71067 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Managing to Reduce Delay
Author(s): L L Sipes; A M Carlson; T Tan; A B Aikman; R W Page
Corporate Author: National Ctr for State Courts
Publications Dept
United States of America

National Conference of Metropolitan Courts
United States of America
Project Director: L L Sipes
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 169
Sponsoring Agency: National Conference of Metropolitan Courts
Los Angeles, CA 90004
National Ctr for State Courts
Williamsburg, VA 23185
US Dept of Justice
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 78-MU-AX-0023
Publication Number: R0049
Sale Source: National Ctr for State Courts
Publications Dept
300 Newport Avenue
Williamsburg, VA 23185
United States of America
Dataset: DATASET 1
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study from the National Center for State Courts outlines general and specific case management techniques, reviews obstacles, and summarizes the impact of these techniques on court performance.
Abstract: In its prior research, the National Center for State Courts found no State trial court which used total case management and only a few which employed selected techniques. Therefore experiments were designed and implemented to test total case management (Phoenix, Ariz., and Cleveland, Ohio), firm trial date and firm continuance policies (Portland, Oreg., Alameda County, Calif., and West Palm Beach, Fla.) and an expedited disposition program for older cases (Cambridge, Mass.). The objectives of total case mangement are to reduce overall case-processing time, subject the litigation process to court supervision from commencement to termination, and increase the court's disposition rate. In both Phoenix and Cleveland courts, the combined pending caseloads of participating judges dropped significantly when compared to those for the rest of the court. The varied results of the firm trial date experiments suggested that termination rates were sensitive to setting levels, although the results were not conclusive. The emphasis on older cases in Cambridge and Portland suggests that the number of very old cases could be controlled with only slight modification of existing policies. It is concluded that local legal cultures can be changed to improve the pace of litigation and that the critical requirement is judicial dedication to reducing unacceptable delay. In addition, change can be limited by a number of factors, including the judges' need to be viewed favorably by the bar, particularly if reelection or retention is at stake; judicial desire to strike a balance between defense and prosecution; and previously achieved improvements in the pace of criminal litigation. Appendixes provide documented descriptions of the steps taken by and in each participating court. A discussion of the information needed to plan, monitor, and evaluate the use of the case management techniques is also presented.
Index Term(s): Arizona; California; Caseload management; Court case flow management; Florida; Massachusetts; National Center for State Courts (NCSC); Ohio; Oregon
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