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Filing late

The US Supreme Court issued a short orders list after its conference this morning.  All of the orders involve pending cases.  The orders list of cases taken up or not will be announced Monday.  None of the cases on today's list are criminal.

An interesting order for SCOTUS inside-baseball fans was issued in United States v. Windsor, the Defense of Marriage Act case.  Two former Attorneys General were granted leave to file an amicus brief out of time.  Rule 37.3(a) sounds absolute regarding time for an amicus brief.  "Motions to extend the time for filing an amicus curiae brief will not be entertained."  Lyle Denniston at SCOTUSblog reports, "The former chiefs of the Justice Department needed permission to have their brief accepted by the Court because, they said, their lawyer had misunderstood the filing deadline, and their document thus was filed late."  So evidently the Court distinguishes between a motion to extend and a motion to file late due to an error.

Deadlines comes in two types: jurisdictional and nonjurisdictional.  In a civil case (including habeas), the deadline to file a certiorari petition is jurisdictional.  Motions to order the clerk to file late certiorari petitions are made occasionally and denied 100.00000% of the time.

CJLF takes no position on DOMA.  We are just watching the show.  How many amicus briefs are there in this case?  Too many for me to bother to count.  The docket is here.

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