Volume 35:1 (Summer 2011)

Rulemaking, Litigation Culture and Reform in Federal Courts


Edward D. Cavanagh


Culturally based litigation practices are central to the policies of federal courts. Unlike the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, cultural based practices are neither uniform nor explicitly defined among the federal courts. These practices are specifically tailored to ensure judicial efficiency, and in turn, they heavily influence practice and procedure in federal courts. This Article examines the significance of cultural litigation practices and their influence on amending or establishing new Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The author proposes that rulemaking must compliment cultural practices in order to be successful and concludes that when conflict exists between these practices and rulemaking, cultural practices will ultimately establish standards for the conduct of litigation in the federal courts.