It doesn’t take long for those who read judicial opinions to come across an unsigned, “per curiam” decision. Many decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court, federal circuit courts, and our state Supreme Court are short-ish opinions that are not ascribed to a single judge or justice. There is a long history of using such opinions “by the court.”

The most recent batch of opinions from the Court of Appeals included 5 unpublished per curiam opinions.… Continue Reading

Out of a total of 24 opinions, the Supreme Court’s most recent set of opinions included nine criminal cases, three terminations of parental rights, and six direct appeals from Business Court decisions.

Of those six Business Court appeals, three were decided with written opinions and three were decided per curiam. What is noticeable, however, is that the three per curiam opinions were not one-pagers.… Continue Reading

Back in July, the Court of Appeals issued a published opinion in In re L.V. dismissing an appeal from an order terminating parental rights after the parent’s attorney filed a no-merit brief. The parent filed a motion for en banc rehearing, pursuant to new Appellate Rule 31.1, but the motion was denied. After the rehearing motion was filed, the court did modify the opinion slightly to correct quotation of a previous opinion.… Continue Reading

The Supreme Court of North Carolina released eight opinions last week, five of which were issued per curiam. However, one of the written decisions applied one of the “extraordinary writs” that are relatively infrequent in appellate practice.

In Dickson v. Rucho, several individual voters and lobbying groups sought to challenge the constitutionality of North Carolina’s most recent redistricting plan. As part of that suit, the plaintiffs sought documents from the defendants, who were (largely) members of the General Assembly.… Continue Reading