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Abstract

This Note examines the propriety of issue preclusion as applied to a magistrate's factual determination by providing an overview of section 636(c) of the Magistrate Act of 1979 and the decisions holding its provisions constitutional. It briefly looks at the expanded use of issue preclusion, which is largely due to the elimination of the mutuality agreement. After reviewing the policies that are promoted through the use of issue preclusion in such a manner, the Note concludes that nonmutual issue preclusion should apply to a magistrate's determination in a civil trial only if the parties are aware of the consequences that may result when they consent.

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