At a largely virtual investiture ceremony broadcast this morning on the Supreme Court’s Youtube page, The Honorable Paul Martin Newby took the oath of office to become our highest court’s 30th Chief Justice.  Newly minted Justices Phil Berger, Jr. and Tamara Barringer were also sworn in as the two junior-most associate justices on the Court.

As Beth noted last week, it is common for incoming jurists to take the oath on January 1, but then participate in a more formal investiture ceremony several days later.… Continue Reading

Over the weekend, the last undecided race for North Carolina’s appellate courts was resolved when Chief Justice Cheri Beasley conceded the race to Senior Associate—and Chief Justice-Elect—Paul Newby.   The race was extraordinarily close, with Chief Justice-Elect Newby ultimately prevailing by a margin of 50.0037% to 49.9963%.

After two rounds of recounts, and with various protests still pending, Chief Justice Beasley and Chief Justice-Elect Newby announced the amicable resolution on social media. … Continue Reading

It continues to amaze me how difficult it is for the public to access basic information about the upcoming elections for open seats on the Supreme Court of North Carolina and the Court of Appeals.  While stories with political angles find their way into the press, the fundamentals—which seats are open, why those seats are open, who is running, why voters should care—get little coverage. … Continue Reading

Students of history will remember a bygone era known as late 2018, when Mark Martin was Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, the median judge on the shrinking Court of Appeals was elected in 2012, and your parents had purchased enough CDs to elevate the quaint twangs of Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line to the top of the country music charts.… Continue Reading

After two years of uncertainty about the future of the Court of Appeals, there appears to have been a breakthrough.  Yesterday, a bill was introduced by Republicans in the North Carolina Senate that would preserve the size of the Court of Appeals at 15 members.  If the bill becomes law–and I expect it will–the drama surrounding the court shrinkage may end as abruptly as it began.… Continue Reading

Clerk of the Supreme Court of North Carolina Amy Funderburk announced by e-mail Friday that December oral arguments in the Supreme Court will be postponed until after the new year.

Such schedule changes are the norm in election years.  It is common practice for the Court not to hold oral arguments between election day and December 31 in years in which an incumbent is leaving the Court. … Continue Reading

It’s fall, and you know what that means.  Football!  Oops, I mean, The Annual NCBA Appellate Section CLE!

There are lots of ways to get plugged in to the appellate community this week:

Appellate Social Bench and bar alike are invited to mingle at Raleigh Times from 5pm to 7pm tomorrow, Thursday, September 27.   Share your favorite functus officio story over a cold beverage; make new friends and reconnect with old; and generally have a lovely time. … Continue Reading

It is amazing to me how difficult it is for the public to access basic information about the upcoming elections for open seats on the Supreme Court of North Carolina and the Court of Appeals.  Legal challenges find their way into the press, but the fundamentals–which seats are open, why those seats are open, who is running, why voters should care–get little coverage.… Continue Reading

Most election years, the candidates for open seats on the Supreme Court of North Carolina and Court of Appeals participate in a lively forum at the Bar Association’s annual meeting.  It didn’t happen this year, in part because the filing period did not close until after the annual meeting.

Fear not, though.  The Wake Women Attorneys have managed to get nearly all of the candidates together for a discussion next week in Raleigh. … Continue Reading