Have you ever written an appellate brief and found yourself struggling to avoid repetition in the separate “statement of the case” and “statement of the facts”?  That is no longer an issue you will have to deal with when writing a federal appellate brief.

Effective December 1, 2013, Federal Appellate Rule 28 has eliminated the statement of facts as a required separate section of the appellate brief.  Former subdivisions (a)(6) (statement of case) and (a)(7) (statement of facts) have been consolidated into a new subdivision (a)(6) that requires a “concise statement of the case setting out the facts relevant to the issues submitted for review, describing the relevant procedural history, and identifying the rulings presented for review, with appropriate references to the record.”

The Fourth Circuit’s local rules have also been amended to reflect these changes to the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure.  While these amendments to the local rules are effective immediately, interested persons may submit comments on the local amendments until January 15, 2014.

–Beth Scherer