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Mootness: Juvenile Extension Order

State v. Michael S., 2005 WI 82, reversing unpublished decision
For Michael S.: Susan Alesia, SPD, Madison Appellate


¶6 Reviewing courts generally decline to decide moot issues but may do so under certain circumstances. [3] A court may decide a moot issue when the issue is of great public importance; occurs frequently and a definitive decision is necessary to guide the circuit courts; is likely to arise again and a decision of the court would alleviate uncertainty; or will likely be repeated, but evades appellate review because the appellate review process cannot be completed or even undertaken in time to have a practical effect on the parties.¶7 The question presented in this case seems to satisfy all these exceptions to the mootness rule. Deciding a circuit court’s retention of authority over a juvenile after the expiration of a dispositional order is a matter of great importance to the sound operation of the judicial system and the rights and interests of juveniles.

¶8 We will therefore address the issue presented in the instant case.


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