The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently wrapped up its 2016-17 term, publishing 50 decisions. This article provides some insight on where the chips fell, with analysis from Michael B. Brennan, a trial and appellate lawyer and a former circuit court judge.
The four-year-long John Doe II investigation into campaign finance activities associated with Gov. Scott Walker’s recall election captured statewide and national attention. This constitutional-law analysis of the John Doe II decision offers an overview of John Doe II, focusing particularly on the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision to terminate the investigation on the basis that it violated constitutional free speech protections.
In many U.S. jurisdictions, only one factor determines whether a charged individual stays in jail before trial. That factor is not guilt or innocence, the nature of the crime, nor the defendant’s character. The factor is how much money the defendant has or can borrow. This article looks at trends in money bail systems nationwide, with a focus on Wisconsin and Washington, D.C.
The author discusses evidence-based pretrial release systems, including the one adopted in Milwaukee County, that rather than set bail based on the seriousness of the charge, focuses on the specific risk a defendant presents to not return to court.
Advances in assistive reproductive technology are giving new options for parentage to individuals who are in same-sex marriages, are dealing with infertility, or both. But Wisconsin law is not keeping pace. To resolve disputes when a surrogacy agreement falls apart and grant parent status, the author proposes that Wisconsin courts use an “intended-parent” test.
On the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in In re Gault, which granted certain rights to juveniles accused of committing crimes, the author reviews today’s juvenile courts, considers how juvenile courts protect minors’ due process rights, and outlines defense lawyers’ obligations to juvenile clients.
When access to justice is denied, it affects us personally, says Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Richard Sankovitz. He explains why access to justice matters for everyone and how lawyers can get involved in their own communities.
Official notices of Wisconsin Supreme Court orders adopting, amending, or repealing rules, statutes, or policies related to Supreme Court rules and State Bar of Wisconsin rules and bylaws.
The Wisconsin Judicial Council petitioned the supreme court to repeal the so-called “Deadman’s statutes,” Wis. Stat. §§ 885.16 and 885.17, and to amend Wis. Stat. § 906.01 to remove references to the Deadman’s statutes.