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Event: The Maryland Court of Appeals – Pulling back the drapes on Oz

From the MSBA website (registration here):

The State and Local Government Law Section will convene at the Court of Appeals to hear from the Hon. Robert N. McDonald, the Hon. Michele D. Hotten, and the Hon. Joseph M. Getty as they share their thoughts about the history of the court and, in particular, government lawyers appearing before the court.

Hors d’oeuvres will be provided.

The price is $25 for members who register before March 24, and $40 thereafter. (The price for non-members is $35/$50 depending on when they register)

Court of Appeals
Section Member : $25
Non-Member : $35
Theresa Michael
MSBA State and Local Government Law Section

FBA Annual Meeting: The BWI-SLC Connection

By Steve Klepper (Twitter: @MDAppeal)

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of moderating a panel at the Federal Bar Association’s 2015 Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City. Our panel, “The Renewed Debate on Unpublished Appellate Opinions,” included Judge Carolyn B. McHugh of the Tenth Circuit, Senior Judge Andre M. Davis of the Fourth Circuit, and Michelle Olsen of Appellate Daily. Read More…

Event: Supreme Court Year in Review

Beginning tomorrow, Maryland attorneys from around the state will begin arriving at the Clarion Resort Fontainebleau Hotel for the Maryland State Bar Association’s Annual Meeting. While the hotel was itself the subject of an en banc Fourth Circuit decision last month, that’s not the reason for this post. No, it’s time for the annual United States Supreme Court Year in Review.

Traditionally, the program ran on Thursday morning. But, after two years of the Supreme Court issuing decisions on the second Thursday of June – a problem, since the panel usually includes a Supreme Court journalist – it is being held on Friday morning this year. Of course, the Supreme Court decided not to issue decisions this Thursday. Hopefully, no one will be confused, because this year’s event looks great. Read More…

Event: Fourth Circuit Seminar, Featuring Judges Motz, Davis, and Harris

This exciting invitation just arrived in our inbox. Big thanks to the FBA Maryland chapter!

Federal Bar Association Maryland Chapter




Panel discussion by 4th Cir. Judges Motz, Davis, and Harris

Advocacy Advice by former U.S. Solicitor General Paul D. Clement

View from Behind the Bench by Clerk of Court Patricia Connor

Round Table Discussion by Distinguished Attorneys

MAY 28th, 2015 at 1:30 p.m.

at the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland in Baltimore

101 W. Lombard Street

Baltimore, MD 21201

Please RSVP to Kelly Cooper, Esq. at by May 14th.

Light Reception to follow


Event: Recent Impact Decisions of the Maryland Appellate Courts

From the Maryland Appellate Blog’s inbox:



 Recent Impact Decisions of the Maryland Appellate Courts

Thursday, March 19, 2015

5:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Court of Appeals of Maryland

Robert C. Murphy Courts of Appeal Building

Fourth Floor 361 Rowe Boulevard Annapolis, MD 21401

 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Social Hour Reception – Foyer to the Courtroom

(front doors to the Courthouse close at 6:00 p.m.)

Cash Bar (Beer & Wine) & Heavy Hors D’oeuvres

6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. – Court of Appeals Courtroom

Speaker Presentations and Audience Questions


$10.00 for MSBA Litigation Section

$25.00 for others


HON. ALAN M. WILNER, Judge (retired), Court of Appeals of Maryland

RENÉE HUTCHINS, Professor of Law, University of Maryland Frances King Carey School of Law



 Please register on-line at

Event: 4th Circuit Impact Decisions, with Remarks by Judge Harris

The Maryland State Bar Association Section of Litigation and the Maryland Chapter of the Federal Bar Association proudly present

 “Fourth Circuit Impact Decisions”
with introductory remarks by
The Honorable Pamela A. Harris

A panel of leading federal appellate practitioners will provide an overview of recent key civil and criminal decisions of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

The Honorable Pamela A. Harris will provide introductory remarks on her transition from private practice to the federal bench. Before joining the Fourth Circuit in July 2014, Judge Harris served as visiting professor at Georgetown University Law Center, as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Policy at the U.S. Department of Justice, as an appellate and Supreme Court litigator with O’Melveny & Myers LLP, and as a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens and D.C. Circuit Judge Harry T. Edwards.

Ezra Gollogly, a principal with Kramon & Graham, P.A. and a member of the Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference, will then moderate a panel of three appellate attorneys: Matthew Kaiser, Samantha Chaifetz, and Steven Klepper.

Matt Kaiser is the founder of Kaiser, LeGrand & Dillon, PLLC, a litigation boutique in Washington, D.C. He represents individual and small business clients in commercial litigation, government investigations, and white-collar cases. Matt has written extensively on a number of topics – particularly in federal criminal law and procedure. He is the author of the Federal Criminal Appeals Blog, which the ABA Law Journal recognized as one of the 100 best law-related blogs in the United States for 2011, 2012, and 2013. Matt teaches professional responsibility at Georgetown University Law Center and is a member of the Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference. He clerked for Chief U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake.

Samantha Chaifetz is an Appellate Staff attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division. Sam has served as lead counsel in over 40 appeals, including constitutional, statutory, and administrative challenges, involving a wide range of issues, from privacy law to health care reform. She has drafted successful Supreme Court filings for the Office of the Solicitor General and argued in the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the D.C., Federal, First, Fourth, Seventh, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits. In 2013, Sam received the Attorney General’s Exceptional Service Award and Civil Division Special Commendation for defense of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. She clerked for U.S. District Judge Louis H. Pollak (E.D. Pa.) and for Ninth Circuit Judge Betty B. Fletcher.

Steve Klepper is a principal with Kramon & Graham, P.A. He has argued civil and criminal appeals before the Fourth Circuit, D.C. Circuit, and both Maryland appellate courts. He has briefed cases in the U.S. Supreme Court and in the Third, Eighth, and Ninth Circuits. Steve founded the Maryland Appellate Blog of the MSBA Litigation Section, which awarded him the Chair’s Award for Exceptional Service in 2014. He serves as an outside advisor for the U. Va. Appellate Practice Clinic, and as president of the Alumnae & Alumni of Goucher College.

The program will take place on Friday, November 14, 2014 at 4:00 p.m. in the Ceremonial Courtroom at the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, 6500 Cherrywood Lane, Greenbelt, Maryland 20770.

The panel discussion will be followed by a reception. Admission to the program is free. Please RSVP by November 7, 2014 to

Court Calendar, Including Dates of Certiorari Conferences, Now on Md. COA Website

By Michael Wein

Attorneys have wondered in the past, “What date will the Court of Appeals decide my certiorari petition?” Wonder no more. To continue its evolution under Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera – who, as discussed in previous posts, has required that an opinion in each case be issued by the end of the term in which it was considered, and spearheaded a “pending cases” webpage to keep track of undecided cases – the Court of Appeals this week created an online calendar on its homepage listing dates of significant Court events, including oral arguments. Of most interest is that now, for the first time, the anticipated dates of certiorari conferences will be available to the general public. (Thursday, September 18, 2014, and Monday, October 20, 2014, are the next-scheduled conferences.) That of course does not necessarily mean that a party’s certiorari petition will be decided at any certain conference, but at least practitioners will know to check for the outcome a day or two after each conference rather than daily throughout the month. There are additional certiorari decisions that come from time-sensitive petitions (such as in some injunction, family law, and election law cases) that are unlikely to be scheduled in advance. Still, this calendar feature should give approximate notice to most certiorari applicants of when they can learn the fate of their petitions, a welcome improvement.

Highlights of FBA’s “Highlights of the Supreme Court’s 2013-2014 Term”

On July 17, the Federal Bar Association hosted its second-annual panel discussion of the highlights of the Supreme Court’s most recent term. Held at the U.S. Courthouse in Baltimore, presenters included the Hon. Benson Everett Legg (Ret.), former judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland; the Hon. Joseph F. Murphy Jr. (Ret.), former judge of the Court of Appeals of Maryland; Suget Raman, the current appellate chief of the U.S. Attorney General’s Office for the District of Maryland; and Jonathan Biran, a previous appellate chief of that Office and, more notably, current contributor to this blog. (Potential bias alert: Judge Legg is this author’s former employer, and Judge Murphy and the author are currently members of the same firm.) A recap of the event, along with these distinguished commentators’ takes on the cases that most caught their attention, appears below (after the jump).

Read More…

FBA Event: Highlights Of The Supreme Court’s 2013-14 Term

This invitation just arrived in our inbox.

Highlights Of The Supreme Court’s 2013-14 Term
July 17th at 6:00 pm

United States Courthouse, Courtroom 1A
101 W. Lombard Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

 Campaign contributions-government prayer-recess appointments-search and seizure-death penalty-restitution for crime victims-and more to come!

Please come to a free panel discussion about the most significant cases from this Supreme Court term, with a reception to follow.  Panelists will include:

  •  The Honorable Joseph F. Murphy, Jr. retired from the Court of Appeals of Maryland in October 2011 to join Silverman, Thompson, Slutkin and White. His practice focuses on alternative dispute resolution including mediation and arbitration, as well as appellate and litigation consultation services. Prior to his elevation to the Court of Appeals, Judge Murphy was Chief Judge of the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, the state’s intermediate appellate court. Judge Murphy has authored hundreds of published appellate opinions. He also served as a trial judge on the Circuit Court for Baltimore County from 1984-1993. Judge Murphy has served as a former Deputy State’s Attorney for Baltimore City, as an Assistant State’s Attorney, and as a Legal Aid Bureau Staff Attorney.
  • Sujit Raman, Appellate Chief in the Maryland US Attorney’s Office, has litigated numerous cases in the US Court of Appeals. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School. Mr. Raman is appearing in his personal capacity; his statements are not the official position of the Department of Justice, and his position is provided for identification purposes only.
  • Jonathan Biran has briefed and argued cases in federal appellate courts including the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. A federal prosecutor for more than 16 years, he served as Appellate Chief in the Maryland US Attorney’s Office before starting the law firm of Biran Kelly LLC, with offices in Baltimore and Washington.

This event is sponsored by the Md Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. Please direct any questions to Mike Leotta at

Lively Discussion at MSBA Supreme Court Roundup Panel

By Jonathan Biran

Yesterday at the MSBA Annual Meeting in Ocean City, the Appellate Practice Committee and Litigation Section put on a very good program about the U.S. Supreme Court’s soon-to-be concluded term. The panel was comprised of John Elwood, an appellate lawyer in the Washington, D.C. office of Vinson & Elkins; Jesse Holland, an Associated Press reporter who has covered the Supreme Court; and Prof. Louis Seidman, who teaches Constitutional Law at Georgetown Law Center. The moderator was Andrew Baida of Rosenberg Martin Greenberg LLP in Baltimore.

Among the cases the panel discussed were:

Schuette v. BAMN: In this 6-2 decision (with Justice Kagan recusing), the Court upheld Michigan voters’ amendment to the state Constitution prohibiting state and governmental entities in Michigan from including race-based preferences as part of the admissions process at state universities. Read More…