9th Circuit, John Roberts, Lawyer of the Day, Rudeness, SCOTUS, Supreme Court

Lawyer of the Day: SCOTUS Victor Advises Losing Litigant to Read Opinion ‘Eternally from Hell’

There’s nothing a lawyer likes better than winning a case — especially a case that’s been argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. It’s basically the crowning achievement of a successful career in the law. That being said, even the most gracious SCOTUS victor is entitled to do some gloating (even if the subject matter was particularly snooze-worthy, like qualified immunity).

But sometimes lawyers can go a little overboard with their victory dances. Sometimes lawyers will think up some really outside-the-box ways to shame the losing litigant — and, in the process, themselves.

And with that, allow us introduce you to our Lawyer of the Day, a man who decided it would be a great idea to write a letter to his opponent with the suggestion that he read the SCOTUS opinion “eternally from hell”….

Our Lawyer of the Day is Steve Filarsky, the attorney who was at the center of the Supreme Court case of Filarksky v. Delia. The issue before SCOTUS was whether or not Filarsky was entitled to qualified immunity for performing work on a contract basis for a city government. The Ninth Circuit held that Filarsky was not entitled to immunity, so he appealed to One First Street. Filarsky received vindication on April 17, 2012, in a 9-0 opinion penned by Chief Justice John G. Roberts, reversing the decision.

Did you have a nice nap? We’ll awaken you from your slumber with a tip that we received about the case:

I’m not sure if this is something you’d be interested in, but I know that you frequently publish articles involving attorney meltdowns that reach the level of being newsworthy. I believe this is one of those cases.

An attorney meltdown, you say? You betcha, and it’s a doozy. Filarsky was so excited that he prevailed that he wrote a letter to Delia the same day the Supreme Court opinion was released. Apparently he didn’t think Delia had much of a case — Filarsky was mad as hell, and he wasn’t going to take it anymore.

We’ve got a picture of the meltdown in question, and yes, it’s real:

Short. Sweet. Scandalous. Just the way we like it.

Filarsky v. Delia [SCOTUSblog]
Filarsky v. Delia [U.S. Supreme Court]

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