May It Please The Court: Weblog of legal news and observations, including a quote of the day and daily updates

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One of MIPTC’s readers from France asked how I came to choose “May It Please The Court” as the name of this blog. In America, when lawyers say, “May it please the Court,” we are asking the judge for her attention and her permission to speak. The proper way to use the phrase is to stand up, get the Court’s attention, say the phrase and then patiently wait for the Court’s response acknowledging that the judge is ready to listen to the lawyer’s argument. The phrase is always used when addressing an appellate court. In practice, it is rarely used when addressing a lower court judge, but you will occasionally hear an experienced attorney say it to get the judge’s attention at the beginning of that lawyer’s address to the Court.

In the case of this website, I was looking for a legal phrase that most lawyers would know and some readers would recognize from hearing it in movies and TV shows about law. I chose “May It Please The Court” because I meant to convey that my readers are “the Court” and I intended it as a “turn of phrase.” I am not asking my readers for their permission to allow me to speak (obviously I am already “speaking” by writing this blog), but I am really hoping that what I have written will please the readers in “my court” (the blog). Here, you are the judge.

Thanks for reading, listening and watching.

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