Human Rights and Peace Law Docket
HOW TO USE THIS DOCKETDigests of Cases
The major divisions in the are: International, Regional — Americas, United States, Regional — Europe, Regional — Africa, Regional — Asia & Pacific. Within the United States category, cases are divided according to the forum: Criminal Court, Civil Court, Administrative, Legislative, Courts Martial, Bilateral Treaties, and Nongovernmental Actions.
Each case begins with a Peace Law (PL) number including the section and page number after the / (e.g., PL-1/28.1 is in section 28, on page 1), and a side bar phrase on the political issue in the case. This is followed by all available information on: the title of the case; the name of the court where it is now pending and the docket number in that court; citations to all reported opinions in the case; a short chronological statement of the facts; a description of the legal questions raised; constitutional and statutory provisions or regulations at issue; the present status of the case; names of counsel for the party raising the human rights or peace law issues and of those filing briefs as friends of the court, and addresses in pending cases.
Each report of the act of a legislature, or of an executive or administrative agency includes similar specific information when available. Each digest of a treaty gives a citation to the volume where it can be found, the number of countries that have ratified it, and when the treaty comes up for renewal.Section and Page Numbers
Each section starts with cases that were won by the human rights advocate in the first court or administrative agency. Then come cases won on appeal. These are followed by cases decided by the supreme court. The next sections are cases lost and cases pending on June 30, 1993. (The next biennial edition will update the pending cases as well as adding new cases won and appealed.)
Each section starts with a new number and the pages in that section are numbered consecutively after the period, i.e., 1.1, 1.2, 1.3; 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, etc. Pages on which completed cases appear are now permanent. Section numbers that appear to be missing will be used for new categories in future editions.
Frequently used Abbreviations are listed on page xxvii.System of Annotations
Titles of Court Cases
The person who files a lawsuit is usually called the plaintiff (Pl); the person sued is usually called the defendant (Def), e.g., (plaintiff) (defendant).
Often there are many defendants. The usually lists only the names of one Pl and one Def. Sometimes when the Pls lose in the first court, a different name is put on the case on the appeal because a different Pl takes the case forward. The first name is also given for the party raising the human rights or peace law issue or relying on it, when it is available, to remind us that Pl and Def are real people, not just symbols.
Titles of cases are not always given in the the same as in the official reports, e.g., in criminal cases the name of the state has been substituted for "People of", "State of", or "Commonwealth of."Citations to Unreported or Unfinished Cases
Many cases described in the have not been decided yet. Many cases have been decided by a jury verdict or by a trial court without an opinion. The official files on these unreported cases are housed in the courts listed under the docket numbers given. E.g., if the lists the title as (ND CA #0000 Civ), the files are in U.S. District Court for Northern District of California, Federal Building, San Francisco, under #0000 Civ. If the gives the courtas (Houston Dist Ct #000000), the files are in that state court in that city.Citations to Reported Cases and Statutes
The standard method of U.S. legal citation is to place the volume number before the name of the publication, followed by the page number within the volume, e.g., 338 US 2 is volume 338 of United States Supreme Court Reports page 2; 42 USC §1982 is volume 42 of the U.S. Code at section 1982.United States Federal Court Citations
The majority of cases filed in U.S. federal courts start in U.S. District Courts, such as the Southern District of New York (SD NY) (where there is more than one District Court in the state), or in the District Court for Massachusetts (DC MA) (where the state or jurisdiction has only one District Court). Within a District there may be a Division, such as the Eastern Division of the Middle District of Alabama (MD AL, E Div).
Decisions in U.S. District Court cases are reported in the Federal Supplement, FSupp. (A few cases go directly from 3-judge federal District Courts to the U.S. Supreme Court.)
Federal cases may be appealed from U.S. District Courts to U.S. Courts of Appeals in 13 Circuits, such as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (5th Cir). Decisions are reported in Federal Reporter, Second Series, F2d. Some cases go directly from administrative agencies to the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (DC Cir).
When the U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear a case, it either grants a petition for certiorari (cert granted) or notes probable jurisdiction (prob juris noted). When it declines to hear a case, it either denies a petition for certiorari (cert den) or dismisses an appeal (app dism'd). Its opinions are reported in U.S. Supreme Court Reports (US), Supreme Court Reporter (SCt), and U.S. Law Week (LW).
When an appellate court reverses a lower court opinion, it may also remand the case for further proceedings in conformity with the opinion (rev'd, remanded).Citations from the UN
UN treaty-making often begins with an international conference of Non-Governmental Organizations about a critical problem, ending with the drafting of a proposed treaty. NGOs may present their draft to a UN Committee hearing, leading to a Report that may lead to a General Assembly Resolution, and in time to a treaty.
Treaties are reported in United Nations Treaty Series (UNTS), Treaties and other International Acts Series (TIAS), and United States Treaties and Other International Agreements (UST).
Resolutions of the UN General Assembly are reported in the Supplement to General Assembly Official Records (UN GAOR Supp) for each session. E.g., General Assembly Resolution #2749 may be found in UN GAOR Supp #21 for the 25th Session. The parallel citation is a document number, e.g., UN DOC A/8021 is document #8021 of the General Assembly.
Decisions of the UN Security Council are cited as UN Doc S/0000, where 0000 is the document number.
Cases before the International Court of Justice of the United Nations are reported in the ICJ Yearbook for the year in which the cases are decided, and in International Legal Materials (ILM).Citations from Nations A to Z
All nations have local and appellate courts and legislative bodies with citations analogous to the U.S. system described.Indices
The Subject Index includes the political issues in the side bars and the legal issues raised in each case. The Geographical Guide lists cases by nation, state, and International Court of Justice.
The Table of Cases lists each case in alphabetical order along with its PL number, including the section and page number. Cases appear under both plaintiff's and defendant's names and under popular names, and statutes are mentioned by popular name as well as by code section.
References to U.S. and State Constitutions, Statutes, Regulations, and Executive Orders are followed by References to Other Countries, Regions, Constitutions, and Statutes, and by References to Treaties, Protocols, Conventions, and International Agencies.
The book ends with Order Forms: for a standing order for future and for all Meiklejohn Institute publications.Updating
In future editions, the last few pages of each section will be revised to include new events in pending cases and to add digests of new cases. Subscribers will receive only those pages with changes and new case digests.Steps in Adoption of Treaties
Steps in Litigation between Nations in International Court of Justice
- Representatives of nations meet and agree to treaty language in UN General Assembly, in multinational meetings, or in bilateral meetings.
- Heads of state sign their names to treaty.
- Heads of state submit the treaty for ratification by a national parliament (e.g., the United States Senate).
- [U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee holds hearings, recommends adoption, rejection, etc.]
- National parliaments adopt treaty by the vote required in the national constitution or other basic law.
- Heads of state deposit the signed treaty with the United Nations, and the UN publicizes the fact.
- If the treaty requires each government to make a report on enforcement within a certain time limit, each government should do so.
- If the treaty requires a follow-up conference to amend or strengthen or continue the treaty, such a conference must be convened.
Steps in Litigation in U.S. Courts
- Nations A and B agree to jurisdiction of ICJ in disputes between themselves and other signatory nations.
- A files suit against B in ICJ, and files brief on the issue of the jurisdiction of ICJ over this dispute.
- B responds solely on the jurisdiction issue.
- ICJ files decision and opinions on its jurisdiction. If it holds that it has jurisdiction, parties file briefs on the merits.
- ICJ hears argument on the merits, and finally issues its decision and opinion(s) on the merits in numbered paragraphs with indication of the votes on each issue in the summary.
- If Nation A refuses to obey ICJ decision, Nation B asks Security Council to act to enforce decision (subject to veto power).
Typical Federal Court Cases
Typical State Court Cases
- U.S. District Court (e.g., Northern District of California (ND CA), District of Columbia District Court (DC DC)) (some opinions reported in Federal Supplement (FSupp), some in Federal Rules Decisions (FRD))
- U.S. Court of Appeals (e.g., Ninth Circuit (9th Cir), District of Columbia Circuit (DC Cir), Federal Circuit (Fed Cir)) (most opinions reported in Federal Reporter Second Series (F2d), some in Federal Rules Decisions (FRD))
- U.S. Supreme Court on appeal or petition for certiorari (all opinions reported in Supreme Court Reporter (SCt), U.S. Law Week (LW), almost all opinions in U.S. Supreme Court Reports (US))
- Municipal Court/Justice of Peace Court (jury verdicts/judicial opinions unreported)
- County Court (e.g., usually called Superior, Common Pleas, Circuit, or District Ct; NY County Ct is called Supreme Ct) (jury verdicts/judicial decisions unreported)
- Intermediate Appellate Court (Ct of App, Dist Ct of App) (some opinions reported in regional reporters, see 4)
- Highest State Court (e.g., usually called Supreme Court; NY highest court is called NY Ct of App) (opinions reported in regional reporters, e.g.: Atlantic Reporter, Second Series (A2d); NE2d, NW2d, So2d, SE2d, SW2d, P2d, California Reporter (CA Rptr), New York Supplement 2d Series (NYS2d))
- U.S. Supreme Court only reached on appeal or petition for certiorari (all opinions reported in Supreme Court Reporter (SCt), U.S. Law Week (LW), almost all opinions in U.S. Supreme Court Reports (US))