Rule 7.212 Briefs

(A) Time for Filing and Service.

(1) Appellant’s Brief.

(a) Filing. The appellant shall file 5 typewritten, xerographic, or printed copies of a brief with the Court of Appeals within

(i) 28 days after the claim of appeal is filed, the order granting leave is certified, the transcript is filed with the trial court, or a settled statement of facts and certifying order is filed with the trial court or tribunal, whichever is later, in a child custody case or an interlocutory criminal appeal. This time may be extended only by the Court of Appeals on motion; or

(ii) the time provided by MCR 7.208(B)(5)(a), 7.208(B)(6), or 7.211(C)(1), in a case in which one of those rules applies; or

(iii) 56 days after the claim of appeal is filed, the order granting leave is certified, the transcript is filed with the trial court or tribunal, or a settled statement of facts and certifying order is filed with the trial court or tribunal, whichever is later, in all other cases. In a criminal case in which substitute counsel is appointed for the defendant, the time runs from the date substitute counsel is appointed, the transcript is filed, or a settled statement of facts and certifying order is filed, whichever is later. The parties may extend the time within which the brief must be filed for 28 days by signed stipulation filed with the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals may extend the time on motion.

(b) Service. Within the time for filing the appellant’s brief, 1 copy must be served on all other parties to the appeal and proof of that service filed with the Court of Appeals and served with the brief.

(2) Appellee’s Brief.

(a) Filing. The appellee shall file 5 typewritten, xerographic, or printed copies of a brief with the Court of Appeals within

(i) 21 days after the appellant’s brief is served on the appellee, in an interlocutory criminal appeal or a child custody case. This time may be extended only by the Court of Appeals on motion;

(ii) 35 days after the appellant’s brief is served on the appellee, in all other cases. The parties may extend this time for 28 days by signed stipulation filed with the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals may extend the time on motion.

(b) Service. Within the time for filing the appellee’s brief, 1 copy must be served on all other parties to the appeal and proof of that service must be filed with the Court of Appeals.

(3) Earlier Filing and Service. The time for filing and serving the appellant’s or the appellee’s brief may be shortened by order of the Court of Appeals on motion showing good cause.

(4) Late Filing. Any party failing to timely file and serve a brief required by this rule forfeits the right to oral argument.

(5) Motions. The filing of a motion does not stay the time for filing a brief.

(B) Length and Form of Briefs. Except as permitted by order of the Court of Appeals, and except as provided in subrule (G), briefs are limited to 50 pages double-spaced, exclusive of tables, indexes, and appendixes. Quotations and footnotes may be single-spaced. At least one-inch margins must be used, and printing shall not be smaller than 12-point type. A motion for leave to file a brief in excess of the page limitations of this subrule must be filed at least 21 days before the due date of the brief. Such motions are disfavored and will be granted only for extraordinary and compelling reasons.

(C) Appellant’s Brief; Contents. The appellant’s brief must contain, in the following order:

(1) A title page, stating the full title of the case and in capital letters or boldface type “ORAL ARGUMENT REQUESTED” or “ORAL ARGUMENT NOT REQUESTED.” If the appeal involves a ruling that a provision of the Michigan Constitution, a Michigan Statute, a rule or regulation included in the Michigan Administrative Code, or any other action of the legislative or executive branch of state government is invalid, the title page must include the following in capital letters or boldface type:

“THE APPEAL INVOLVES A RULING THAT A PROVISION OF THE CONSTITUTION, A STATUTE, RULE OR REGULATION, OR OTHER STATE GOVERNMENTAL ACTION IS INVALID”;

(2) A table of contents, listing the subject headings of the brief, including the principal points of argument, in the order of presentation, with the numbers of the pages where they appear in the brief;

(3) An index of authorities, listing in alphabetical order all case authorities cited, with the complete citations including the years of decision, and all other authorities cited, with the numbers of the pages where they appear in the brief.

(4) A statement of the basis of jurisdiction of the Court of Appeals.

(a) The statement concerning appellate jurisdiction must identify the statute, court rule, or court decision believed to confer jurisdiction on the Court of Appeals and the following information:

(i) the date of signing the judgment or order, or the date of data entry of the judgment or order in the issuing tribunal’s register of actions, as applicable to confer jurisdiction on the Court of Appeals under MCR 7.204 or MCR 7.205.

(ii) the filing date of any motion claimed to toll the time within which to appeal, the disposition of such a motion, and the date of entry of the order disposing of it;

(iii) in cases where appellate counsel is appointed, the date the request for appointment of appellate counsel was filed;

(iv) in cases where appellate counsel is retained or the party is proceeding in propria persona, the filing date of the claim of appeal or the date of the order granting leave to appeal or leave to proceed under MCR 7.206.

(b) If the order sought to be reviewed adjudicates fewer than all the claims, or the rights and liabilities of fewer than all the parties, the statement must provide enough information to enable the court to determine whether there is jurisdiction.

(5) A statement of questions involved, stating concisely and without repetition the questions involved in the appeal. Each question must be expressed and numbered separately and be followed by the trial court’s answer to it or the statement that the trial court failed to answer it and the appellant’s answer to it. When possible, each answer must be given as “Yes” or “No”;

(6) A statement of facts that must be a clear, concise, and chronological narrative. All material facts, both favorable and unfavorable, must be fairly stated without argument or bias. The statement must contain, with specific page references to the transcript, the pleadings, or other document or paper filed with the trial court,

(a) the nature of the action;

(b) the character of pleadings and proceedings;

(c) the substance of proof in sufficient detail to make it intelligible, indicating the facts that are in controversy and those that are not;

(d) the dates of important instruments and events;

(e) the rulings and orders of the trial court;

(f) the verdict and judgment; and

(g) any other matters necessary to an understanding of the controversy and the questions involved;

(7) The arguments, each portion of which must be prefaced by the principal point stated in capital letters or boldface type. As to each issue, the argument must include a statement of the applicable standard or standards of review and supporting authorities, and must comply with the provisions of MCR 7.215(C) regarding citation of unpublished Court of Appeals opinions. Facts stated must be supported by specific page references to the transcript, the pleadings, or other document or paper filed with the trial court. Page references to the transcript, the pleadings, or other document or paper filed with the trial court must also be given to show whether the issue was preserved for appeal by appropriate objection or by other means. If determination of the issues presented requires the study of a constitution, statute, ordinance, administrative rule, court rule, rule of evidence, judgment, order, written instrument, or document, or relevant part thereof, this material must be reproduced in the brief or in an addendum to the brief. If an argument is presented concerning the sentence imposed in a criminal case, the appellant’s attorney must send a copy of the presentence report to the court at the time the brief is filed;

(8) The relief, stating in a distinct, concluding section the order or judgment requested; and

(9) A signature.

(D) Appellee’s Brief; Contents.

(1) Except as otherwise provided in this subrule, the appellee’s brief must conform to subrule (C).

(2) The appellee must state whether the jurisdictional summary and the standard or standards of review stated in the appellant’s brief are complete and correct. If they are not, the appellee must provide a complete jurisdictional summary and a counterstatement of the standard or standards of review, and supporting authorities.

(3) Unless under the headings “Statement of Questions Involved” and “Statement of Facts” the appellee accepts the appellant’s statements, the appellee shall include:

(a) a counter-statement of questions involved, stating the appellee’s version of the questions involved; and

(b) a counter-statement of facts, pointing out the inaccuracies and deficiencies in the appellant’s statement of facts without repeating that statement and with specific page references to the transcript, the pleadings, or other document or paper filed with the trial court, to support the appellee’s assertions.

(E) Briefs in Cross Appeals. The filing and service of briefs by a cross appellant and a cross appellee are governed by subrules (A)-(D).

(F) Supplemental Authority. Without leave of court, a party may file an original and four copies of a one-page communication, titled “supplemental authority,” to call the court’s attention to new authority released after the party filed its brief. Such a communication,

(1) may not raise new issues;

(2) may only discuss how the new authority applies to the case, and may not repeat arguments or authorities contained in the party’s brief;

(3) may not cite unpublished opinions.

(G) Reply Briefs. An appellant or a cross-appellant may reply to the brief of an appellee or cross-appellee within 21 days after service of the brief of the appellee or cross-appellee. Reply briefs must be confined to rebuttal of the arguments in the appellee’s or cross-appellee’s brief and must be limited to 10 pages, exclusive of tables, indexes, and appendices, and must include a table of contents and an index of authorities. No additional or supplemental briefs may be filed except as provided by subrule (F) or by leave of the Court.

(H) Amicus Curiae.

(1) An amicus curiae brief may be filed only on motion granted by the Court of Appeals. The motion must be filed within 21 days after the appellee’s brief is filed. If the motion is granted, the order will state the date by which the brief must be filed.

(2) The brief is limited to the issues raised by the parties. An amicus curiae may not participate in oral argument except by court order.

(I) Nonconforming Briefs. If, on its own initiative or on a party’s motion, the court concludes that a brief does not substantially comply with the requirements in this rule, it may order the party who filed the brief to file a supplemental brief within a specified time correcting the deficiencies, or it may strike the nonconforming brief.