I intend to cover this afternoon the history of certifying questions of law, including its roots in England and the U.S. Supreme Court’s endorsement fifty years ago, the Uniform Law Commission’s success in promulgating the Uniform Certification of Questions of Law Act, Delaware’s certified question process, examples of missed opportunities to certify that lead to excess uncertainty, delay and expense, and conclude with success stories in the use of this process by federal courts, the SEC, and my own Court. In each success-story instance, the choice was made not to journey through murky marshes of memory into thickets of guesswork but to get a timely answer from the ultimate authority on the state law involved. Of course, I need to disclaim from the outset that to the extent that I express any opinions today, they are my own and not formal expressions of the Delaware Supreme Court.
Avoiding the Thickets of Guesswork: The Delaware Supreme Court and Certified Questions of Corporation Law, 63 SMU L. Rev. 1127 (2010)