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Possessing the Court of Appeal(s)

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You’d think we had better things to think about – but we don’t! (Actually, we do, but work with me here. “Word” people, so to speak, like this kind of thing 🙂

From Legalwriting.net which has better spacing than I’ve reproduced here:

In Texas, we call it a court of appeals, not a court of appeal.

Thus the possessive becomes a problem. One commenter and others I have consulted prefer this form for a singular possessive:

the court of appeals’ opinionwhich looks better than–

the court of appeals’s opinion

but others always write around it–

the opinion of the court of appeals

By the way, if you are talking about two courts, it’s– the courts of appeals”

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One response to “Possessing the Court of Appeal(s)”

  1. Shelley says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever had a problem with this. If the letterhead says “Court of Appeals,” then there you go. They hear more than one appeal, don’t they? And it was the Court of Common Pleas back in the day, rather than the Court of Common Plea. 🙂

    Besides, unless you’re talking about the fixtures in the courtroom or their robes, why do you need a possessive?

    “The Court of Appeals wrote in X case…”

    “The decision respondent asks this court to reach directly contradicts the Court of Appeals in X case…”

    Color me clueless.

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