Hastings Law Journal


Mary Kay Kane


The enactment in 1948 of Rule 60(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure raised concerns that courts would take too broad a discretion in granting relief from federal judgments. Reviewing the experience of the past 30 years, Professor Kane finds that, while such discretion has not been abused, uncertainty engendered by the rule has prolonged and unnecessarily complicated litigation. She suggests reasons why finality should be favored over a continued search for truth in the four principal situations in which Rule 60(b)(6) is applied. To this end, Professor Kane proposes a rationale for dealing with such situations so as to preserve the benefits of finality of judgments.

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