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ANALYSIS: Magistrate Judges May Be Needed Now More Than Ever

April 26, 2022, 9:00 AM

Lawyers may find that magistrate judges can present additional paths to efficient case resolution amid a judicial slowdown from Covid-19, dozens of judicial vacancies, and an increase in pending civil matters.

The backlog in civil matters pending before U.S. federal district courts reached 645,435 cases at the end of 2021. That’s 11.6% more than at the end of 2020 and 69.3% more than in 2017. Parties will resolve many of these matters via settlement, of course. But for those disputes that cannot be resolved amicably, the parties will want to find an efficient pathway towards a final resolution on the ...