APPELLATE

JURISDICTION

IN THE NINTH CIRCUIT

 

 

Updated 2020

 

 

 

Office of Staff Attorneys

United States Court of Appeals

for the Ninth Circuit

 

 

 

 

 

This outline is intended for use as a starting point for research.  It is not intended to express the views or opinions of the Ninth Circuit, and it may not be cited to or by the courts of this circuit.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Originally written in March 1999 by Lisa Fitzgerald.  Updated by the Office of Staff Attorneys.

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Corrections and comments should be e-mailed to Outlines@ca9.uscourts.gov.

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Table of Contents

I.            INTRODUCTION.. 1

II.          STATUTORY BASES FOR CIVIL APPEALS. 1

A.          APPEALS FROM FINAL DECISIONS (28 U.S.C. § 1291) 2

1.           FINAL DECISIONS. 2

a.           Generally. 2

i.             Need to Consider Finality. 3

ii.           Policy Behind Final Judgment Rule. 4

b.           Determining Finality. 5

i.             District Court Intent 5

ii.           Adjudication of all Claims. 6

(a)         Precise Damages Undetermined. 7

(b)         Implicit Rejection of Claim or Motion. 7

(c)         Apparent Attempt to Dispose of All Claims. 8

(d)         Discrepancy between Order and Judgment 8

(e)         Scope of Underlying Action. 9

(1)     Consolidated Actions 9

(2)     Actions to Enforce or Compel 9

c.            Manufacturing Finality. 10

d.           “Pragmatic” or “Practical” Finality Doctrine. 11

i.             Parameters of Doctrine. 11

ii.           Applications 12

2.           COLLATERAL ORDER DOCTRINE. 13

a.           Generally. 13

b.           Requirements of Collateral Order Doctrine. 14

c.            Appealability of Specific Orders under Collateral Order Doctrine  15

i.             Abstention Orders 15

ii.           Orders Denying Immunity. 15

iii.         Disqualification of Counsel 16

iv.         Fed. R. Civ. P. 11 Sanctions 16

v.           Other Orders 17

(a)         Appealable Collateral Orders. 17

(b)         Orders Not Appealable as Collateral Orders 19

3.           ORDERS CERTIFIED UNDER FED. R. CIV. P. 54(b) 22

a.           Generally. 22

i.             District Court Determinations 22

ii.           Appellate Court Review.. 23

b.           Contents of Certification Order 23

i.             “No Just Reason for Delay”. 23

ii.           Reference to Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(b) 24

iii.         “Specific Findings” Supporting Certification. 24

c.            Propriety of Certification. 25

i.             Appellate Review Required. 25

ii.           Standard of Review.. 25

iii.         Scrutiny under Morrison-Knudsen. 26

iv.         Trend Toward Greater Deference to District Court 26

(a)         Orders Properly Certified under Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(b) 27

(b)         Orders Not Properly Certified under Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(b) 29

d.           Immediate Appeal from Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(b) Order Required  30

e.            Denial of Rule 54(b) Certification. 30

B.          APPEALS FROM INTERLOCUTORY DECISIONS (28 U.S.C. § 1292) 31

1.           INTERLOCUTORY INJUNCTIVE ORDERS (28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1)) 31

a.           Generally. 31

b.           Order Granting or Denying an Injunction. 31

i.             Explicit Grant or Denial or Injunction. 31

ii.           Implicit Grant or Denial of Injunction. 32

(a)         Practical Effect of Order 32

(b)         Potential for Serious or Irreparable Harm.. 34

(c)         Effective Challenge Not Possible after Final Judgment 34

c.            Orders Modifying, Continuing, or Dissolving Injunction. 34

i.             Order Modifying Injunction. 34

ii.           Order Continuing Injunction. 36

iii.         Order Dissolving Injunction. 36

iv.         Order Denying Modification or Dissolution of Injunction  36

d.           Examples of Orders Appealable under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1) 37

i.             Order Granting Permanent Injunction. 37

ii.           Order Denying Entry of Consent Decree. 37

iii.         Order Granting Injunction Despite Lack of Motion for Interim Relief 38

iv.         Order Requiring Submission of Remedial Plan. 38

v.           Certain Orders Affecting Assets. 38

vi.         Order Denying Relief in Mandamus Action. 39

vii.        Order Staying Extradition. 39

viii.      Order Denying Stay of Immigration Removal Order 39

ix.         Order Disapproving Class Settlement 39

e.            Examples of Orders Not Appealable under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1) 39

i.             Order Denying Motion to Abstain. 40

ii.           Order Denying Motion for Stay. 40

iii.         Order Granting England Reservation of Jurisdiction. 40

iv.         Order Denying Motion to Quash. 40

v.           Order Granting Conditional Permissive Intervention. 41

vi.         Certain Orders Affecting Assets. 41

vii.        Order Remanding to Federal Agency. 42

viii.      Order Denying Summary Judgment Due to Factual Disputes 42

ix.         Order Denying Entry of Consent Decree Not Appealable by Party Against Whom Injunction Sought 42

x.           Case Management Order 42

xi.         Order to Clarify Scope of Injunction. 43

xii.        Orders Relating to Discovery. 43

f.            Temporary Restraining Order 43

i.             Order Tantamount to Denial of Preliminary Injunction  44

ii.           Orders Effectively Deciding Merits of Case. 45

g.           Mootness. 46

2.           INTERLOCUTORY RECEIVERSHIP ORDERS (28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(2)) 46

3.           INTERLOCUTORY ADMIRALTY ORDERS (§ 1292(a)(3)) 47

a.           Generally. 47

b.           Appealable Admiralty Orders. 48

c.            Nonappealable Admiralty Orders. 49

4.           INTERLOCUTORY PERMISSIVE APPEALS (28 U.S.C. § 1292(b)) 49

a.           Procedure for Appeal under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b) 50

i.             District Court Certification under § 1292(b) 50

ii.           Timely Petition from Order Certified under § 1292(b) 50

iii.         Appellate Court Permission to Appeal under § 1292(b) 51

iv.         Stay Pending Appeal from Certified Order 52

b.           Standards for Evaluating § 1292(b) Certification Order 52

i.             Order Raises Controlling Question of Law.. 52

ii.           Difference of Opinion Exists as to Controlling Question  53

iii.         Immediate Appeal Would Materially Advance Litigation  54

c.            Examples of Orders Reviewed under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b) 54

d.           Examples of Orders Not Reviewed under 28 U.S.C § 1292(b) 56

5.           PENDENT APPELLATE JURISDICTION.. 57

C.          APPEALABILITY OF SPECIFIC ORDERS. 58

1.           ADMIRALTY.. 58

2.           AGENCY.. 58

3.           APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL. 58

a.           Generally. 58

b.           Appointment of Counsel in Title VII Action. 59

4.           ARBITRATION (9 U.S.C. § 16) 59

a.           Cases Governed by the Federal Arbitration Act 60

b.           Arbitration Orders Appealable under 9 U.S.C. § 16. 61

c.            Arbitration Orders Not Appealable under 9 U.S.C. § 16. 62

d.           Interlocutory v. Final Decision. 63

e.            Other Avenues for Appeal from Arbitration Orders 65

5.           ASSETS (Liens, Attachments, etc.) 66

a.           Orders Restraining Assets 66

b.           Orders Releasing Assets 66

6.           ATTORNEY’S FEES. 67

a.           Interim Attorney’s Fees Order 67

b.           Post-Judgment Attorney’s Fees Order 68

7.           BANKRUPTCY.. 68

8.           CLASS ACTIONS. 68

a.           Interlocutory Appeal from Class Certification Order 68

i.             Fed. R. Civ. P. 23. 68

ii.           Decisions Predating Fed. R. Civ. P. 23(f) 69

b.           Review of Class Certification Order After Final Judgment 69

i.             Final Order Adjudicating Individual Claim.. 69

ii.           Dismissal Following Settlement of Individual Claim.. 70

iii.         Dismissal for Failure to Prosecute Individual Claim.. 70

iv.         Underlying Judgment Reversed on Appeal 70

c.            Appeal from Orders Allocating Cost of Notifying Class Members 70

9.           CONSOLIDATED ACTIONS. 71

10.        CONTEMPT AND SANCTIONS. 71

a.           Appealability of Contempt or Sanctions Order Issued in the Course of an Underlying District Court Proceeding. 72

i.             Contempt or Sanctions Order Against Party. 72

(a)         Appealability of Civil v. Criminal Contempt Orders 72

(b)         Criminal Contempt Defined. 73

(c)         Civil Contempt Defined. 73

(d)         Sanctions Order against Party. 74

ii.           Contempt or Sanctions Order against Nonparty. 74

(a)         Generally. 74

(b)         Contempt or Sanctions Order against Nonparty Witness  75

(c)         Contempt or Sanctions Order against Nonparty Attorney. 75

(d)         Contempt or Sanctions Order against Nonparty Journalist 77

iii.         Contempt or Sanctions Order against Party and Nonparty Jointly. 77

iv.         Denial of Motion for Contempt or Sanctions 78

b.           Appealability of Contempt or Sanctions Order Issued After Final Judgment in an Underlying District Court Proceeding. 78

i.             Post-Judgment Contempt or Sanctions Order Generally  78

ii.           Post-Judgment Continuing Contempt Order 79

iii.         Order Denying Motion to Vacate Contempt Order 79

c.            Appealability of Contempt or Sanctions Order Issued As Final Judgment in Enforcement or Contempt Proceeding. 80

i.             Contempt Order as Final Judgment in Enforcement 80

ii.           Contempt Order as Final Judgment in Contempt Proceeding  80

11.        DEFAULT. 80

a.           Motion for Default Judgment Granted. 80

b.           Motion for Default Judgment Denied. 81

c.            Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment Granted. 81

d.           Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment Denied. 81

12.        DISCOVERY ORDERS AND SUBPOENAS. 81

a.           Appeal by a Person Who is a Party to an Underlying District Court Proceeding. 81

i.             Order Compelling Discovery. 82

(a)         Discovery Order Issued against Party. 82

(b)         Discovery Order Issued against Nonparty. 82

ii.           Protective Order 83

(a)         Order Protecting Party from Discovery. 83

(b)         Order Protecting Nonparty from Discovery. 83

iii.         Pretrial Order to Contribute to Discovery Fund. 83

iv.         Post-Judgment Discovery Orders. 83

b.           Appeal by Person Not a Party to An Underlying District Court Proceeding. 84

i.             General Rule: Target of Order Compelling Discovery Cannot Appeal Until Contempt Citation Issues 84

ii.           Exceptions Permitting Appeal Absent Contempt Citation  85

(a)         Discovery Order or Subpoena Directed against Third Party (Perlman Exception) 85

(1)     Examples of Orders Denying Motions to Quash Subpoenas That Are Appealable. 86

(2)     Examples of Orders Denying Motions to Quash Subpoenas That Are Not Appealable. 88

(b)         Order Directed against Head of State. 89

iii.         Appeal from Order Denying Motion to Compel 89

c.            Appeal by Person Who is a Party to a Proceeding Limited to Enforcement or Discovery. 89

i.             Discovery Order Issued as Final Judgment in Enforcement Proceeding. 89

ii.           Discovery Order Issued as Final Judgment in Discovery Proceeding. 90

13.        DISMISSAL. 91

a.           Dismissal Denied. 91

i.             Generally. 91

ii.           Denial of Immunity. 92

b.           Dismissal Granted. 92

i.             Generally. 92

ii.           Dismissal of Complaint v. Dismissal of Action. 92

iii.         Leave to Amend Complaint 93

(a)         Leave to Amend Expressly Granted. 93

(b)         Leave to Amend Expressly Denied. 94

(c)         Leave to Amend Not Expressly Granted or Denied  94

(1)     Deficiencies Appear Incurable. 94

(2)     Deficiencies Appear Curable. 94

iv.         Involuntary Dismissal 95

(a)         Dismissal with Prejudice. 95

(b)         Dismissal without Prejudice. 95

(c)         Dismissal for Failure to Prosecute. 95

v.           Voluntary Dismissal without Prejudice. 96

(a)         Appealability of Voluntary Dismissal Order 96

(b)         Impact of Voluntary Dismissal of Unresolved Claims on Appealability of Order Adjudicating Certain Claims  97

(1)     Voluntary Dismissal by Losing Party. 97

(2)     Voluntary Dismissal by Prevailing Party. 98

vi.         Voluntary Dismissal with Prejudice. 98

vii.        Dismissal Subject to Condition or Modification. 99

viii.      Dismissal of Fewer Than All Claims. 100

14.        DISQUALIFICATION.. 100

a.           Disqualification of Counsel 100

b.           Disqualification of District Judge. 101

15.        IN FORMA PAUPERIS STATUS. 102

16.        IMMIGRATION.. 102

17.        IMMUNITY.. 102

a.           Generally. 102

b.           Absolute Presidential or Legislative Immunity. 103

c.            State Sovereign Immunity. 104

d.           Foreign Sovereign Immunity. 104

e.            Federal Sovereign Immunity. 105

f.            Military Service Immunity (Feres doctrine) 105

g.           Qualified Immunity of Government Employees. 105

i.             Order Denying Dismissal or Summary Judgment 105

ii.           Only Legal Determinations Subject to Review.. 106

(a)         Legal Determinations Defined. 107

(b)         Factual Determination Defined. 108

iii.         Successive Appeals from Orders Denying Immunity  109

h.           Municipal Liability. 109

i.             Immunity from Service (“Specialty Doctrine”) 109

j.             Settlement Agreement (Contractual Immunity) 110

k.           Absolute Judicial Immunity. 110

l.             Absolute Political Immunity. 110

m.         Absolute Witness Immunity. 110

n.           Tribal Sovereign Immunity. 110

18.        INJUNCTION.. 111

19.        INTERVENTION.. 111

a.           Intervention as of Right 111

i.             Order Denying Intervention Altogether 111

ii.           Order Denying Intervention in Part 111

b.           Permissive Intervention. 112

c.            Must Appeal Denial of Intervention Immediately. 112

20.        MAGISTRATE JUDGE DECISIONS (28 U.S.C. § 636(c)) 112

a.           Final Judgment by Magistrate Appealed Directly to Court of Appeals 112

b.           No Appellate Jurisdiction if Magistrate Lacked Authority. 113

c.            Parties’ Consent to Entry of Final Judgment by Magistrate. 113

21.        POST-JUDGMENT ORDERS. 115

a.           Post-Judgment Orders Generally Final 115

b.           Separate Notice of Appeal Generally Required. 116

c.            Appealability of Specific Post-Judgment Orders. 116

i.             Post-Judgment Order Granting or Denying Attorney’s Fees  116

ii.           Post-Judgment Order Granting or Denying Costs 117

iii.         Post-Judgment Order Granting or Denying New Trial 117

iv.         Post-Judgment Orders Related to Discovery. 118

v.           Post-Judgment Contempt Orders. 118

vi.         Orders Granting or Denying Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b) Relief 118

vii.        Other Post-Judgment Orders. 119

22.        PRE-FILING REVIEW ORDER.. 119

23.        RECEIVERSHIP. 119

24.        REMAND.. 119

a.           Order Remanding to State Court 120

i.             Remand Due to Defect in Removal Procedure. 121

ii.           Remand Due to Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction. 122

iii.         Remand for Reasons Other than Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction or Defect in Removal Procedure. 123

b.           Order Remanding to Federal Agency. 125

i.             Remand to Federal Agency on Factual Grounds. 126

ii.           Remand to Federal Agency on Legal Grounds 126

c.            Order Denying Petition for Removal from State Court 127

d.           Order Denying Motion to Remand to State Court 127

25.        SANCTIONS. 128

26.        STAYS. 128

a.           Stay Granted. 128

i.             Abstention-Based Stays 128

ii.           Other Stays. 129

b.           Stay Denied. 130

27.        SUMMARY JUDGMENT. 131

a.           Order Denying Summary Judgment 131

b.           Order Granting Partial Summary Judgment 132

28.        TAKING.. 132

29.        TAX.. 133

30.        TRANSFER. 133

a.           Transfer from District Court to District Court 133

b.           Transfer from District Court to Court of Appeals 133

D.          PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS. 133

1.           GENERALLY.. 133

2.           BAUMAN FACTORS. 134

a.           Alternative Relief Unavailable. 135

b.           Possibility of Irreparable Damage or Prejudice. 135

c.            Clear Error by District Court 136

d.           Potential for Error to Recur 137

e.            Important Question of First Impression. 137

3.           NOTICE OF APPEAL CONSTRUED AS PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS. 137

a.           Appeal Construed as Petition for Writ of Mandamus 138

b.           Appeal Not Construed as Petition for Writ of Mandamus 139

4.           AVAILABILITY OF MANDAMUS RELIEF FROM SPECIFIC ORDERS. 139

a.           Class Certification Orders 139

i.             Fed. R. Civ. P. 23. 139

ii.           Decisions Predating Fed. R. Civ. P. 23(f) 139

b.           Contempt Orders 140

c.            Discovery Orders 140

i.             Mandamus Relief Available. 140

ii.           Mandamus Relief Not Available. 141

d.           Disqualification Orders. 141

i.             Disqualification of Judge. 141

ii.           Disqualification of Counsel 142

e.            Jury Demand Orders 142

f.            Media Access Orders. 143

g.           Remand Orders. 144

i.             Mandamus Relief Available. 144

ii.           Mandamus Relief Not Available. 144

h.           Transfer Orders. 144

i.             Other Orders 146

i.             Mandamus Relief Available. 146

ii.           Mandamus Relief Not Available. 147

III.       TIMELINESS. 148

A.          TIME PERIOD FOR APPEAL. 148

1.           TIMELINESS OF NOTICE OF APPEAL. 148

2.           DEADLINE FOR FILING NOTICE OF APPEAL. 149

3.           WHETHER UNITED STATES IS A PARTY.. 149

a.           Liberal Construction of Fed. R. App. P. 4(a) 149

b.           Determining Party Status. 150

i.             Federal Official as Defendant 150

ii.           United States as Nominal Plaintiff 150

iii.         United States Dismissed Prior to Appeal 150

iv.         United States as Party in Bifurcated Proceedings. 150

v.           United States as Party to Consolidated Action. 151

vi.         Foreign Government Not Treated Like United States  151

vii.        United States Not a Party to Attorney Discipline Proceeding  151

c.            Defining Agency. 151

i.             Relevant Factors 151

ii.           Factors Applied. 152

4.           COMPUTATION OF TIME TO FILE NOTICE OF APPEAL. 152

a.           Days Counted in Determining Deadline for Filing Notice of Appeal 152

b.           Date Notice of Appeal Deemed “Filed”. 153

i.             Generally. 153

ii.           Pro Se Prisoners 154

5.           APPLICABILITY OF FED. R. APP. P. 4(a) TIME LIMITS. 154

a.           Fed. R. App. P. 4(a) Time Limits Applicable. 155

b.           Fed. R. App. P. 4(a) Time Limits Not Applicable. 155

6.           CROSS-APPEALS. 156

B.          ENTRY OF JUDGMENT. 156

1.           GENERALLY.. 156

2.           150-DAY RULE. 157

a.           Application of the 150-Day Rule. 157

3.           SEPARATE DOCUMENT REQUIREMENT. 159

a.           Document Distinct from Memorandum.. 159

i.             Fed. R. Civ. P. 58 Requirements Not Satisfied.