Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure

This morning, my colleague Whit Pierce forwarded me a legal writing tip from Bryan A. Garner, a well known American lawyer and lexicographer who has authored a number of books on legal writing. Garner’s tip was that in writing a brief, you should avoid “depersonalization” of your opponent by referring to him/her/it/them with a legal label such as “plaintiff” or “appellant.”… Continue Reading

In federal court, an order granting a preliminary injunction is immediately appealable under 28 U.S.C. § 1292.  In North Carolina courts, however, an order granting a preliminary injunction is generally not immediately appealable, unless the appellant can show that the order affects his substantial rights.  If an injunction is entered in federal court and not appealed, and the case is then remanded to state court, can the aggrieved party ask the state court to revisit the injunction and thereby restart the appeals clock on the issues presented by the injunction?… Continue Reading

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued two opinions last week clarifying issues relating to notices of appeal.

In Jackson v. Lightsey, the Fourth Circuit addressed 1) whether a notice of appeal that failed to specify that the appeal was being made to the Fourth Circuit was sufficient to confer appellate jurisdiction, and 2) whether a notice of appeal that designated a 2013 order, but not a 2012 order, was sufficient to allow the Fourth Circuit to review the 2012 order. … Continue Reading

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. … Continue Reading