Sunday, February 06, 2005

Walker v. Los Angeles MTA (Cal. Supreme Ct. - February 3, 2005)

More sense from the California Supreme Court, which holds here that an appellate court should liberally contrue technically improper notices of appeal (e.g., as here, notices that purport to appeal from an order denying a new trial, rather than properly noticing an appeal of the resulting judgment), at least when it is reasonably clear what the appellant was trying to do and there has been no prejudice to the respondent.

Exactly right. We've come a long way -- deliberately and rightly so -- from the snare-ridden procedural pitfalls that confronted litigants in the common law tradition. This case continues the evolution of California procedure. It is precisely the kind of result that you would hope for from a modern, enlightened judiciary that is (properly) more interested in advancing justice than in upholding procedural hypertechnicalities that serve no function in a particular case. Good job.