April 20, 2011

E-briefs in the California Supreme Court?

An e-brief disc is a CD-ROM that contains the record on appeal in searchable form as well as all of the appellate briefs in the case, with hyperlinked citations to authorities and the record. They are one of the best tools we know for handling the large record case. They make it a cinch to check your opponent’s legal and record citations, as well as to find that key portion of the record that supports your point. As you might expect, they’re also great when it comes time to prepare for oral argument. And if you are out of the office, you can take the entire case with you on one CD, and pop it into your laptop at your convenience. E-brief providers like National Data Support can help you to create an e-brief disc.

We understand from our conversations with appellate staff attorneys that they greatly appreciate receiving e-briefs, especially in big record cases. And some Courts of Appeal, like the Second District, have extended invitations to parties to file e-briefs. So should you file an e-brief disc when conducting briefing on the merits in the Supreme Court? Well, the Court’s website contains no e-brief invitation, but we think the justices and the Court’s attorneys would appreciate e-briefs every bit as much as the Courts of Appeal.

UPDATE: The Supreme Court has accepted e-brief discs for filing in at least two cases, Christoff v. Nestlé USA, S155242, and City of Hope National Medical Center v. Genentech, S129463.

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