Thursday, June 07, 2012



By Alan Miller, Candidate for Judge Superior Court II

Efficiency and Scheduling

There are problems within the county court system. In the next several weeks, I will post my proposals that outline how I think we can do better. 

Today, I will continue to discuss my proposals related to efficiency in the courts.  

Strict Continuance Policy

In some instances, cases can drag on for months or years, much to the frustration of the parties involved. One of the more common culprits of these delays are continuances: requests for more time to deal with a case. With few exceptions, continuances are almost always granted. While some continuances are justified, there are also some done for the sole purpose of delaying the proceedings in an effort to wear down the opposing party. No case gets better over time. Witnesses’ memories fade. Documents and other evidence are misplaced. Attorneys’ bills mount.

As judge, unless the need for a continuance is immediately apparent, I will not grant the request. Instead, I will meet with both parties, in open court, to evaluate whether the continuance is justified and whether it is truly necessary to the case. If it is, the court will consider the continuance. If it is not, the continuance will not be granted. This is a similar approach to that that has been adopted in the Dearborn Superior Court No. 1, with what appear to be good results.

No unnecessary review hearings

Review hearings are often scheduled in criminal and civil cases alike, regardless of whether any of the parties have asked for it. The apparent purpose of these hearings is for the court to check in on the parties, to ensure the court’s orders are being followed. While this could be an admirable endeavor in the appropriate circumstances, these hearings clog the court’s schedule, and often result in reopening the case to more dispute. This is especially true in divorce cases, where additional court time can make an already volatile situation worse. More dispute results in additional court time and expense to the individuals involved through added legal expenses, missed work time, and transportation expenses, just to name a few. A judge must not continue to meddle in cases no longer before the court and instead allow the attorneys to advise their clients to take the appropriate action if the court’s orders are not being followed.

This is the third part of my platform statement; a detailed proposal for how to improve our current justice system. It will be released over the next several months through and PLEASE feel free to forward this to your friends and family.
Thanks for your continued support

Alan Miller

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