Researching Existing Informal Opinions
Informal advisory opinions dating back to July 1, 1993, are online. Because only summaries are published and informal advisory opinions are not binding, informal advisory opinions are not usually formally withdrawn. It is necessary to look to the more recent opinions for the most current general guidance on any given issue. Prior to the year 2000, the first two digits of the opinion number indicated the year. Now, the first four digits indicate the year.
Researching Existing Formal Opinions of the Missouri Supreme Court Advisory Committee
The formal opinions and informal advisory opinions through June 30, 1994, are included in a deskbook entitled Missouri Advisory Opinions published by The Missouri Bar in 1995. A supplement to the deskbook was published in 1996. Opinions included in the deskbook and supplement are indexed by topic and include an annotation to the particular rule(s) involved. The book is no longer in print, but Missouri Bar members may view the deskbook and supplement in the Forms Bank. Formal opinions published since 1996 are available on the Supreme Court of Missouri’s website.
Requesting a Formal Opinion of the Missouri Supreme Court Advisory Committee
A request for a formal opinion is the appropriate way to address a matter of general importance, not necessarily related to a specific fact situation. The Advisory Committee may issue formal opinions under Supreme Court Rules 5.30(a). Requests for formal opinions should be addressed to the chair of the Missouri Supreme Court Advisory Committee located at 3335 American Avenue, Jefferson City, MO 65109. The process for issuance of a Formal Opinion can take more than a year.