MY anal retentive state state supreme court, refused acceptance of my appeal because the certificate of service was wrong. I sta stated the party would be notify through the E filing system but there is no notification provided that way. Regardless I Perfected service via email and USPS. Didn't matter. I checked with a couple of other courts and the Supreme Court(US) and they felt that it was still a valid filing.

. Remedy? -US supreme Court?Writ

  • Since there was an answer to MSJ in my case, would I be able to file for judgment on the pleadings and some disciplinary action against judge. Or
    – Jared
    Commented Apr 13, 2018 at 5:13

3 Answers 3


If the state supreme court is not interested in hearing a case on appeal, it's probably not going to issue an extraordinary writ forcing itself to accept the case. I don't imagine a federal court would do so either, since the state court has the inherent authority to manage its docket, set rules of practice and procedure, etc.

That probably leaves you with nothing other than an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. If you're going pro se, you can read some more about how to approach that process here: https://www.ca10.uscourts.gov/clerk/filing-your-appeal/pro-se/supreme-court

I'm sure you already know it's an uphill fight. Good luck.

  • 1
    Unless a federal issue can be identified, there is no appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court available.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Apr 11, 2018 at 3:57
  • 2
    An unsuccessful state-court litigant can pretty much always identify a federal issue by claiming some kind of failure of due process. I'd put the odds of success at roughly zero, but the option does exist.
    – bdb484
    Commented Apr 12, 2018 at 14:40

You are stuck. You lost. You can't appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court from a state supreme court on every issue, only on federal questions. And, the sufficiency of your compliance with state court certificate of service requirements is a question of state law, not federal law.

  • It is a federal question-it's called constitutional due process.
    – Jared
    Commented Apr 13, 2018 at 5:37

I second bdb484's answer that your remaining option is to file a Petition in the U.S. Supreme court.

Beware of the Rules of the Supreme Court, as the specs are more intricate than those of a state supreme court.

I assume that your grounds for appeal are ultimately traceable to the equal protection of the laws (and due process, as you accurately replied to @ohwilleke). Therefore, in your Petition you'll need cite as "Constitutional Provision Involved" the XIV Amendment, Section 1, of the U.S. Constitution. Try to follow how others structure/present their petition, which is what I did in preparation for 17-1560 and 17-1576.

I'd also like to direct your attention to Lawrence v. State Tax Comm., 286 U.S. 276, 283 (1932), where the U.S. Supreme Court stated:

Even though the claimed constitutional protection be denied on non-federal grounds, it is the province of this Court to inquire whether the decision of the state court rests upon a fair or substantial basis.

Depending on the particulars of the issue with certificate of service, you may want to support your position using Brewer v. Office of Employee Appeals, 163 A.3d 799, 804 (2017), where the Washington D.C.'s top court stated:

The record shows an unbroken effort by a pro se petitioner, operating by mail from her San Francisco, California, address, to properly comply with somewhat arcane filing rules.

The point is not whether the rules in your jurisdiction are arcane as well, but that the Brewer court disapproved of the rather intransigent approach the appellee took towards the plaintiff/appellant.

A petitioner has 90 days to file his petition in the U.S. Supreme Court. Don't leave it to the last minute, as drafting it and preparing the prerequisite 40 copies in booklet format takes time. Go for it!

Good luck.

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