Twitter bots for good?

Most of the time when I see the word “bot” I think of Russian trolls influencing the U.S. election. But not this time! USA Today investigative reporter Brad Heath has created an automatic Twitter bot that follows selected U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Courts of Appeal, and Federal District Court cases of note and posts documents from new docket entries to Twitter.

In its documentation, the bot is described as follows:

The bot uses PACER RSS feeds to gather the latest filings from 74 U.S. District Courts and five federal courts of appeals and stores the docket entries in a database. It matches new filings against a preselected list of major cases, scrapes matching documents from PACER, uploads them to a DocumentCloud project and posts the results on Twitter.

You must have a PACER account in order to access the documents – we do! So if you want the latest filing on United States v. AT&T and Time Warner, or any other U.S. court case you’re watching, let us know if we can help. There may be a fee for retrieving documents.

And follow Big Cases on Twitter for up-to-date notification.

h/t to Internet for Lawyers.

 

Manitoba eLaw – New Edition – Litigation

There’s been a lot of new developments on the litigation front since the last update in December. Highlights from Issue No. 84, February 2018:

  • Modified Test for Mandatory Interlocutory Injunction: SCC
  • Public Interest Standing and Supplementing Reasons: SCC
  • No Realistic Chance of Success: MBCA/MBQB
  • Careless Smoking Negligent: MBQB
  • Recent Flood Claims
  • Further Amendments to Court of Queen’s Bench Rules
  • Court of Queen’s Bench Practice Direction
  • Facilitating the Management of  Multi-jurisdictional Class Actions: CBA
  • Recommended Reading

 

Delay and Civil Litigation

Trial delays are a long-standing issue in the justice system. The latest amendment to Manitoba’s Queen’s Bench Rules, effective January 1, 2018,  addresses that head on. A recent Alberta Court of Appeal decision, Humphreys v. Trebilcock, 2017 ABCA 116 (leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed) thoroughly examines this issue. 

The plaintiffs commenced their action, a claim that the defendants engaged in fraudulent business practices, on December 14, 2006. A trial would not likely take place until 2020.

[175]      The plaintiffs have not provided a satisfactory excuse to account for their failure to press their action ahead with reasonable expedition. They do not allege that the defendants have engaged in acts either intended or having the effect of interfering with the ordinary advance of the action.

[176]      Has the inordinate and inexcusable delay for which the plaintiffs are responsible impaired an important interest of the defendants? If so, is it sufficiently important to justify an order dismissing the plaintiffs’ action?

[177]      The moving parties have proved that it is more likely than not that the nonmoving parties’ inordinate and inexcusable delay has caused them nonlitigation and litigation prejudice.

Further commentary is available on Lexology:

Unanimous Supreme Court of Canada Denies Leave on Chronic Delay Case, Dalton W. McGrath and Michael O’Brien of Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP