Justice Souter and the Civil Rules

13 Pages Posted: 11 Mar 2010 Last revised: 12 Nov 2012

Scott Dodson

University of California Hastings College of the Law

Date Written: March 10, 2010


Justice Souter’s recent retirement from the Court after nearly twenty years presents a unique opportunity to comment on his legacy. No doubt others will eulogize or castigate him for his membership in the Planned Parenthood v. Casey troika, but there is much more to the man and his jurisprudence. Indeed, the danger is that Justice Souter will be pigeonholed into one opinion, an opinion that he wrote early in his Supreme Court career, to the detriment of understanding the complex justice that he was. This short essay therefore analyzes a unique set of opinions - those that he authored on the federal civil rules. And what it finds is a justice deeply committed to the fair treatment of the litigants that come before him. That trait says much about David Souter, both the justice and the man.

Keywords: Souter, Twombly, Iqbal, Twiqbal, Mayle, Ortiz, Bowles, Casey

Suggested Citation

Dodson, Scott, Justice Souter and the Civil Rules (March 10, 2010). Washington University Law Review, Vol. 88, p. 289, 2010; William & Mary Law School Research Paper No. 09-45. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1568090

Scott Dodson (Contact Author)

University of California Hastings College of the Law ( email )

200 McAllister Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
United States
415-581-8959 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uchastings.edu/faculty/dodson/index.php

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