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Cunningham v. Hamilton County

June 14, 1999

TERESA L. CUNNINGHAM, PETITIONER
v.
HAMILTON COUNTY, OHIO



Court Below: 144 F. 3d 418

SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

Syllabus

OCTOBER TERM, 1998

CUNNINGHAM v. HAMILTON COUNTY

NOTE: Where it is feasible, a syllabus (headnote) will be released, as is being done in connection with this case, at the time the opinion is issued. The syllabus constitutes no part of the opinion of the Court but has been prepared by the Reporter of Decisions for the convenience of the reader. See United States v. Detroit Timber & Lumber Co., 200 U. S. 321, 337.

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

CUNNINGHAM v. HAMILTON COUNTY, OHIO

Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit

No. 98-727.

Argued April 19, 1999

Decided June 14, 1999

When petitioner, an attorney representing a plaintiff, failed to comply with certain discovery orders, the Magistrate Judge granted the respondent's motion for sanctions against petitioner under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(a)(4). The District Court affirmed the sanctions order and also disqualified petitioner as counsel. Although the District Court proceedings were ongoing, petitioner immediately appealed the order affirming the sanctions award. Because federal appellate court jurisdiction is ordinarily limited to appeals from "final decisions of the district courts," 28 U. S. C. §1291, the Sixth Circuit dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. It held that the sanctions order was not immediately appealable under the collateral order doctrine, which provides that certain orders may be appealed, notwithstanding the absence of final judgment, but only when they are conclusive, resolve important questions separate from the merits, and are effectively unreviewable on appeal from the final judgment in the underlying action, e.g., Swint v. Chambers County Comm'n, The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Thomas

Opinion of the Court

CUNNINGHAM v. HAMILTON COUNTY

____ U. S. ____ (1999)

On Writ Of Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For ...


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