United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Introduction

According to the Encyclopedia of the American Constitution, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit was created by the federal courts improvement act (1982), to take over the jurisdiction of the court of customs and patent appeals and the court of claims. Its first judges were the judges of the superseded courts.

United States Court Of Appeals For The Federal Circuit Definition

Cafc in this legal Encyclopedia
Court Of Appeals For The Federal Circuit in this legal Encyclopedia
Fed. Cir. in this legal Encyclopedia
United States Court Of Appeals For The Federal Circuit definition in the Law Dictionary

Legal Materials

In 1982, the appellate portion of the United States Court of Claims and the United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals merged to form the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The Court hears appeals from a number of trial courts and Federal agencies in a number of different subject areas, as discussed in the “Jurisdiction” section, below.

The telephone number for the Court Clerk’s Office is 202-275-8000. The number for the Court Library is 202-275-8411.

Opinions: The Court posts Opinions and Orders back to 2004. You can get cases free from Google Scholar (1920s-present), the Public Library of Law (1982-present) and FindLaw (1995-present). The Georgetown Law Library posts a free archive of cases covering July 1995 to February 2008.

Westlaw has Federal Circuit opinions back to 1945 in the CTAF database. Opinions from 1856 to 1944 are searchable in CTAF-OLD.

Lexis includes Federal Circuit opinions with opinions from other Federal courts in GENFED;FED. To get just Federal Circuit opinions, add “& court(federal circuit)” to the end of your search.

Docket Information: A calendar for upcoming events is posted on the Court’s Web site. Starting with January 1, 2012, docket sheets are available through Pacer.

Jurisdiction: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has the most unusual jurisdictional scope of any court I know. The Court Jurisdiction page of the Court website explains:

The Court “has nationwide jurisdiction in a variety of subject areas, including international trade, government contracts, patents, trademarks, certain money claims against the United States government, federal personnel, veterans’ benefits, and public safety officers’ benefits claims. Appeals to the court come from all federal district courts, the United States Court of Federal Claims, the United States Court of International Trade, and the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. The court also takes appeals of certain administrative agencies’ decisions, including the United States Merit Systems Protection Board, the Boards of Contract Appeals, the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences, and the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board. Decisions of the United States International Trade Commission, the Office of Compliance, an independent agency in the legislative branch, and the Government Accountability Office Personnel Appeals Board, and the Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance also are reviewed by the court. The court’s jurisdiction consists of administrative law cases (55%), intellectual property cases (31%), and cases involving money damages against the United States government (11%). The administrative law cases consist of personnel and veterans claims. Nearly all of the intellectual property cases involve patents. Suits for money damages against the United States government include government contract cases, tax refund appeals, unlawful takings, and civilian and military pay cases.”

See Also

Case Pulls
Court Clerks / Court Houses
Docket Sheets
Federal Court Rules
Government Contracts
Judges
Jury Instructions
Patents
Trademarks
United States Court of Appeals
United States Courts, generally

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit: Open and Free Legal Research of US Law

Federal Primary Materials

The U.S. federal government system consists of executive, legislative, and judicial branches, each of which creates information that can be the subject of legal research about United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. This part provides references, in relation to United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, to the legislative process, the federal judiciary, and the primary sources of federal law (cases, statutes, and regulations).

Federal primary materials about United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit by content types:

Laws and Regulations

US Constitution
Federal Statutory Codes and Legislation

Federal Case Law and Court Materials

U.S. Courts of Appeals
United States courts of appeals, inclouding bankruptcy courts and bankcruptcy appellate panels:

Federal Administrative Materials and Resources

Presidential Materials

Materials that emanate from the President’s lawmaking function include executive orders for officers in departments and agencies and proclamations for announcing ceremonial or commemorative policies. Presidential materials available include:

Executive Materials

Federal Legislative History Materials

Legislative history traces the legislative process of a particular bill (about United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and other subjects) for the main purpose of determining the legislators’ intent behind the enactment of a law to explain or clarify ambiguities in the language or the perceived meaning of that law (about United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit or other topics), or locating the current status of a bill and monitoring its progress.

State Administrative Materials and Resources

State regulations are rules and procedures promulgated by state agencies (which may apply to United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and other topics); they are a binding source of law. In addition to promulgating regulations, state administrative boards and agencies often have judicial or quasi-judicial authority and may issue administrative decisions affecting United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Finding these decisions can be challenging. In many cases, researchers about United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit should check state agency web sites for their regulations, decisions, forms, and other information of interest.

State rules and regulations are found in codes of regulations and administrative codes (official compilation of all rules and regulations, organized by subject matter). Search here:

State opinions of the Attorney General (official written advisory opinions on issues of state law related to United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit when formerly requested by a designated government officer):

Tools and Forms

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