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  • Authority Of A Federal Judge

  • Authority Of A Federal Judge

    Do judges have the authority to tell lawyers and litigants to do it my way, when zealous advocates want to do it their way? The answer is clearly yes.

    Look to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Federal Rules of Evidence. They contain all the authority to do what has to be done.

    Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

      • Rule 1: Rules shall be construed to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action.

      • Rule 16: Judges are authorized to hold pretrial conferences and to enter scheduling orders.

      • Rule 61: Courts at every stage of the proceeding must disregard errors or defects that do not affect the substantial rights of the parties.

      • Rule 83: In all cases not provided for by rule, district judges may regulate their practice in any manner consistent with federal law and local rules of the district in which they act.
    Federal Rules of Evidence

      • Rule 102: Rules shall be construed to secure elimination of unjustifiable expense and delay.

      • Rule 403: Relevant evidence may be excluded for consideration of undue delay, wasted time, and needless presentation of evidence.

      • Rule 611(a): District courts shall exercise reasonable control over presentation of evidence so as to avoid needless consumption of time.
    So, ample authority exists in the rules—and as derived from judges’ inherent authority—for the judge to take charge of the case. In fact, the rules give the judge the responsibility to make sure cases are resolved expeditiously.

    This information came from an
    FJC online article.

    *** Any law, statute, regulation or other precedent is subject to change at any time ***

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