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The post below was published on Wednesday, September 8th, 2010 at 8:30 PM.

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Eleventh Circuit: Remittitur and Appellate Jurisdiction

This decision from the Eleventh Circuit came out as I was rebuilding this site, and I tucked it away for when I returned. The decisions offers two “noteworthy” discussions.

One concerns remittitur motions. In footnote 22, which incidentally comes on page 20, the court reminds folks that a remittitur motion cannot stand alone but must be part of a motion for new trial. The court goes on to question the appellant’s failure to identify a specific figure to which the judgment should arguably have been remitted, stating:

Because Advanced did not indicate the amount of the remittitur or judgment reduction the district court should have ordered–put another way, since Advanced did not point the district court to a dollar amount that would not be excessive–it is unclear how the district court could have divined such amount.

I suppose there may be a tip to practitioners in there.

The second noteworthy point concerns jurisdiction. In footnote 14, which comes on page 12, the court explains how the district court’s order extending the time in which the appellant could file post-trial motions was ineffective to alter the jurisdictional consequence of taking more than the 10 days previously allowed by the rules to file such motions. Thus, the notice of appeal, filed after the trial court resolved the post-trial motions, was ineffective to confer jurisdiction on the appellate court to review the judgment. However, because the appellee failed to object to the district court’s extension order, the order was effective to extend the due date for purposes of ruling on the post-trial motions themselves, and since the notice of appeal was filed within 30 days of their denial, the appellate court had jurisdiction to review the denial order.

To sum that up: the appellate court had jurisdiction to review the denial of the post-trial motions but not the judgment itself.

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