The Federal Courts' Rulemaking Buffer

51 Pages Posted: 8 May 2018

Date Written: May 7, 2018


Procedural rulemaking is often thought of as a second-order task for the federal court system, relevant to the courts’ work but not essential to their function. In reality, rulemaking plays an integral role in the court system’s operation, by actively insulating the courts from environmental pressure. This Article explains how power over procedural rulemaking protects the federal courts from environmental uncertainty, and describes the court system’s efforts to maintain the effectiveness of the rulemaking buffer in response to historical and contemporary challenges.

Keywords: Rulemaking, Federal Courts, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Judicial Conference of the United States, Organizational Studies, Buffering, Resource Dependence, Advisory Committee on Civil Rules, Legitimacy

JEL Classification: K40, K41, L20, L29, L32, L84

Suggested Citation

Singer, Jordan M., The Federal Courts' Rulemaking Buffer (May 7, 2018). William & Mary Law Review, Vol. 60, 2018 (Forthcoming), New England Law | Boston Research Paper No. 18-06, Available at SSRN:

Jordan M. Singer (Contact Author)

New England Law | Boston ( email )

154 Stuart St.
Boston, MA 02116
United States
(617) 368-1434 (Phone)


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