Seven Ways Up


This article was originally published in the June 26, 2009 issue of the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals.

Seven Ways Up by Benjamin G. Shatz

Gay marriage. Half a billion dollar punitive damages awards. Wage and hour class actions affecting employers statewide. Tribal sovereignty rights versus fair political practices. Some cases have "Supreme Court" written all over them. But just how does a case actually reach the California Supreme Court, which celebrates its 160th birthday this year, and which sits at the apex of the largest court system in the world? There are at least seven different ways for a matter to be decided by the chief justice and six associate justices of California's highest court. Six of these are fairly straightforward, but the seventh has a greater air of mystery.

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