Flashcards in Trial, Judgment, and Post-Trial Motions' Deck (44):
What is a motion in limine?
A pretrial motion to decide whether the jury should hear certain evidence.
The 7th Amendment preserves the right to a jury trial in this type of suit?
Civil Action at Law.
Does the 7th Amendment preserve the right to a jury trial at equity?
If a case involves both law and equity and there is a demand for a jury, what limitations on the jury?
Jury decides the facts underlying the legal claim, but not the equity claim.
Does the 7th Amendment apply in state court?
The jury demand must be issued in writing no later than ____ days after the service of . . .
Last pleading raising jury triable issues.
How many peremptory challenges to prospective jurors?
Peremptory challenges may not be used for ___ or ___
Race or gender
Jurors in fed court: min and max?
6 and 12
Six jurors are empaneled and one is excused for good cause. Can the remaining five return a verdict?
No, need at least six unless agreed otherwise.
Unless parties agree otherwise, what jury vote is required for a verdict?
Must the parties be allowed to make specific objections to the instructions and to the rejection of proposed instructions? If no, why? If so, by when?
Yes, before final argument and instruction
If a party fails to object to instructions before the jury is charged, can he raise such an objection on appeal?
Almost always No
When can a party who fails to timely object to jury instructions raise the issue on appeal?
When there is plain error that affects substantial rights.
Three types of verdicts?
General w/ special interrogatories
What is unique about a special verdict?
Jury answers specific questions about the facts in dispute. The judge then reaches conclusions based on the those facts the jury found.
What is the purpose of a general verdict with special interrogatories?
To ensure the jury considered the important issues.
On a general verdict, who enters the judgment?
On a special verdict or general with special rogs, what happens?
Judge approves a judgment and clerk enters
What happens if they verdict shows that the jury did not follow instructions OR it is internally inconsistent?
No judgment is entered.
If there is juror misconduct, the court can do what two things?
Set aside the verdict,
Order new trial
Will a verdict be set aside if misconduct of juror is harmless?
A juror cannot testify about things occurring or statements made during jury deliberations EXCEPT to show what>
Extraneous prejudicial information OR outside influence.
A motion for Judgment as a Matter of Law is based on what?
Evidence presented at trial
Why would a judge grant JMOL and not let the jury decide the case?
If reasonable people could not disagree on the result
When can a party move for JMOL?
After the other side has been heard at trial.
When there is a motion for JMOL, the court views the evidence in a light most favorable to whom?
The non-moving party
When is a RJMOL proper?
When the jury reached a conclusion that reasonable people could not have reached.
Effect of a grant of RJMOL?
Judgment for the party that lost the verdict.
Time limit for moving for RJMOL?
28 days after the entry of judgment
What is an absolute prerequisite to bring RJMOL?
Must have moved for JMOL at the proper time during trial.
A party must move or a new trial within how long of what?
28 days after judgment is entered.
A new trial can be granted on the based of what?
Any non-harmless error that makes the judge think a do-over is warranted.
Why is ordering a new trial less drastic than RJMOL?
It results in a do-over, so the same party could win again.
What is remittitur?
A request for P to take a lesser amount than what was set by the jury.
Is remittitur ok in both fed and state court?
What is additur?
A request that the D pay a greater amount in damages than the jury set.
In additur ok in both fed and state court?
Not OK in fed, but OK in state.
Why is additur considered unconstitutional in fed court?
Violates the 7th Amendment.
A Motion for Relief from Order or Judgment asks the district court to do what?
Set aside an order or judgment.
Four grounds from a Motion for Relief From Order or Judgment? Plus timing
Clerical Error (anytime)
Mistake, excusable neglect (reasonable time, no more than 1 year)
New evidence that could not have been discovered with due diligence for a new trial motion (reasonable time, no more than 1 year)
Judgment is void (reasonable time, no maximum)
In a MSJ, the court does/doesn't weigh the credibility of witnesses and the strength of the evidence.
If default is entered against a D and much later he discovers that the court lacked SMJ, what action should he take to prevent A from executing?
Bring an independent suit in equity to set aside the judgment (because jurisdictional defect is grounds to set aside a judgment)