The Texas Supreme Court has called for the views of the solicitor general (CVSG) in In re J.O.A., T.J.A.M., T.J.M., and C.T.M., Children, No. 08-0379 (order list). (( The Court’s language in this order was identical to that in its previous CVSG: “The Solicitor General is invited to file a brief in this case expressing the views of the State.”

And, like that previous case, the Court is asking the SG’s office to file a brief expressing “the views of the State” in a case in which a state agency is already a party. ))

What makes this case stand out is the timing. This case had already been submitted for decision — oral argument was held in mid-October, just over five months ago. Now is the time one would expect an early opinion draft to begin circulating among the chambers.

But the Court’s request for additional briefing suggests that the decision-making process is not yet complete. The parties should take note, as should any potential amicus curiae who may have felt that it was too late to assist the Court with this case.