Among the myriad ways that the interests of underprivileged persons and groups can be protected and promoted, and other causes of public interest can be served, is through the participation by amicus curiae in litigation adjudicating relevant issues. Amici must "identify every person or entity, other than the amicus curiae, its members, or its counsel, who made a monetary contribution to the preparation or submission of the brief." An amicus who has been adversely affected as an individual by enforcement of a law that a corporate litigant is contesting may be able to poignantly present the law's ramifications through personal perspective and in eidetic detail. The benefits of such participation also may be apparent in public interest litigation, where an indigent or poorly-resourced litigant lacks adequate representation and amicus support advocates for a more promising disposition. Although the submission of briefs by amici can promote a greater understanding by the court of the potential impact and policy implications of its ruling, a number of issues have been raised about the advisability and utility of amicus participation. Pro bono representation of public interest amici is especially important in light of the increasingly common practice of filing amicus briefs, support for which typically is easier to marshal by the government and the private sector.
The Utility of Pro Bono Representation of U.S.-Based Amicus Curiae in Non-U.S. and Multi-National Courts as a Means of Advancing the Public Interest,
28 Fordham Int'l L.J. 88
Available at: http://ir.lawnet.fordham.edu/ilj/vol28/iss1/2