Thursday, October 02, 2008

Updates and Apologies

I am feeling a little guilty about the lack of substance and insight of late. I won't make excuses other than to say that I've had my head in a recently filed appellate brief, some travel, and other distractions.

I do have some upcoming events that may be of interest. Preparing for these have been part of the distractions:

On October 16, I'll be in NY helping with a CITBA program on courtroom skills. This should be a fun program. We are going to be doing mock-trial segments in front of Judge Wallach who will tell the us all what we did right, did wrong, or could do better.

On October 29, I'll be in Toronto at the IE|Canada meeting to discuss customs valuation. Here are the details on that event.

October 30, 2008 I will be speaking on NAFTA at a program near Chicago sponsored by the World Trade Center of Illinois. Here is a link to the brochure.

Lastly, I'll be back in NY in November for the 15th Judicial Conference of the U.S. Court of International Trade. I'll be moderating a panel on customs law developments. The theme for the event is "Testing the Boundaries of Customs and Trade Litigation." The judicial conference is usually a fun meeting; if fun to you is being in a room completely packed full of customs and trade lawyers.

I have already turned in my Judicial Conference paper. The upshot of the paper is that the Court and lawyers appearing before it might benefit from a more objective test to determine the persuasiveness of WCO materials including the Explanatory Notes and WCO HSC rulings. To fill that gap, I propose applying the same Skidmore analysis the Court currently applies to informal ruling making from Customs. I'm not sure whether that idea advances the ball very far but it does build upon basic administrative law concepts.

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