On Tuesday, the Court of Appeals issued its latest batch of opinions. Good news: the impending turkey feast has not slowed the court’s pace in grappling with interesting appellate issues.  Bad news: still no real resolution for most of them.

Rule 3.1 No-Merit Briefs: A Middle Ground?

In July and October, Kip wrote about the evolving disagreement in the Court of Appeals as to what type of appellate review is required when appointed counsel files a no-merit brief under Appellate Rule 3.1. … Continue Reading

Mark your calendars:  Justice Edmunds, Associate Justice on our Supreme Court, will face a primary challenge after all–on June 7.

Last June, the governor signed a bill that allows sitting Supreme Court Justices to participate in a retention election in lieu of a contested election.  An attorney filed suit in November, arguing that the retention election law is unconstitutional.  The case was heard before a three-judge panel in Wake County because it posed a facial challenge to the retention election law. … Continue Reading

Who has the right to control environmental commissions in North Carolina–the Governor, or the Legislature?

That is the central question in a lawsuit filed by current and former Governors McCrory, Hunt, and Martin against Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore.  After a three-judge panel struck down the General Assembly’s process for appointing members to such commissioners (including one overseeing the coal-ash cleanup), Defendants appealed directly to the Supreme Court of North Carolina under the new “direct appeal” statute, which allows for such direct appeal from lower court rulings that hold an act of the General Assembly to be unconstitutional.… Continue Reading