Rule 7.312 Briefs and Appendixes in Calendar Cases

(A)   Form. Briefs in calendar cases must be prepared in the form provided in MCR 7.212(B), (C), and (D). Briefs shall be printed on only the front side of the page of good quality, white unglazed paper by any printing, duplicating, or copying process that provides a clear image. Original typewritten pages may be used, but not carbon copies.

(B)   Citation of Record; Summary of Arguments; Length of Briefs.

(1)   A party’s statement of facts or counterstatement of facts shall provide the appendix page numbers of the transcript pages, pleadings, or other documents being cited or referred to.

(2)   If the argument of any one issue in a brief exceeds 20 pages, a summary of the argument must be included. The summary must be a succinct, accurate, and clear condensation of the argument actually made in the body of the brief and may not be a mere repetition of the headings under which the argument is arranged.

(3)   Except by order of the Court allowing a longer brief, a brief may not exceed 50 pages, excluding the table of contents, index of authorities, and appendixes, but including the summary of argument.

(C)   Cover. A brief must have a suitable cover of heavy paper. The cover page must follow this form: (next page)

In the Supreme Court

Appeal from the [court or tribunal appealed from]

[judge or presiding officer]



   Plaintiff-[Appellant or Appellee],





Docket No. _____________________



   Defendant-[Appellant or Appellee],



Brief on Appeal – [Appellant or Appellee]



Attorney for [PL or DF]-[AT or AE]

[Business Address]






The cover page of the appellant’s brief must be blue; that of the appellee’s brief, red; that of an intervenor or amicus curiae brief, green; and that of a reply brief, gray. The cover page of a cross-appeal brief, if filed separately from the primary brief, must be the same color as the primary brief.

(D)   Appendixes.

(1)   Form and Color of Cover. Appendixes must be prepared in conformity with MCR 7.212(B), except that they must be printed on both sides of the page. The cover pages of appendixes shall be printed on yellow paper and shall be similarly endorsed as briefs under MCR 7.312(C) but designated as an appendix.

(2)   Appellant’s Appendix. An appendix filed by the appellant must be entitled “Appellant’s Appendix,” must be separately bound, and numbered separately from the brief with the letter “a” following each page number (e.g., 1a, 2a, 3a). Each page of the appendix must include a header that briefly describes the character of the document, such as the names of witnesses for testimonial evidence or the nature of the documents for record evidence. The appendix must include a table of contents and, when applicable, must contain

(a)   the relevant docket entries of the lower court or tribunal and the Court of Appeals arranged in a single column;

(b)   the trial court judgment, order, or decision in question and the Court of Appeals opinion or order being appealed;

(c)   any relevant finding or opinion of the trial court;

(d)   any relevant portions of the pleadings or other parts of the record; and

(e)   any relevant portions of the transcript, including the complete jury instructions if an issue is raised regarding a jury instruction.

The items listed in subrules (D)(2)(a) to (e) must be presented in chronological order.

(3)   Joint Appendix.

(a)   The parties may stipulate to use a joint appendix, so designated, containing the matters that are deemed necessary to fairly decide the questions involved. A joint appendix shall meet the requirements of subrule (D)(2) and shall be separately bound and served with the appellant’s brief.

(b)   The stipulation to use a joint appendix may provide that either party may file, as a supplemental appendix, any additional portion of the record not covered by the joint appendix.

(4)   Appellee’s Appendix. An appendix, entitled “Appellee’s Appendix,” may be filed. The appellee’s appendix must comply with the provisions of subrule (D)(2) and be numbered separately from the brief with the letter “b” following each page number (e.g., 1b, 2b, 3b). Materials included in the appellant’s appendix or joint appendix may not be repeated in the appellee’s appendix, except to clarify the subject matter involved.

(E)   Time for Filing. Unless the Court directs a different time for filing,

(1)   the appellant’s brief and appendixes, if any, are due within 56 days after the leave to appeal is granted;

(2)   the appellee’s brief and appendixes, if any, are due within 35 days after the appellant’s brief is served on the appellee; and

(3)   the reply brief is due within 21 days after the appellee’s brief is served on the appellant.

(F)   What to File. The parties shall

(1)   file 14 copies of a brief (1 signed) and appendixes with the clerk;

(2)   serve 2 copies on each attorney who has appeared in the case for a separate party or group of parties and on each party who has appeared in person;

(3)   serve 1 copy on the Attorney General in a criminal case or in a case in which the state is a named or interested party; and

(4)   file a proof of service with the clerk.

(G)   Cross-Appeal Briefs. The filing and service of cross-appeal briefs are governed by subrule (F). An appellee/cross-appellant may file a combined brief for the primary appeal and the cross-appeal within 35 days of the appellant’s brief in the primary appeal. An appellant/cross-appellee may file a combined reply brief for the primary appeal and a responsive brief for the cross-appeal within 35 days of the cross-appellant’s brief. A reply to the cross-appeal may be filed within 21 days of the responsive brief.

(H)   Amicus Curiae Briefs and Argument.

(1)   An amicus curiae brief may be filed only on motion granted by the Court except as provided in subsection (2).

(2)   A motion for leave to file an amicus curiae brief is not required if the brief is presented by the Attorney General on behalf of the people of the state of Michigan, the state of Michigan, or an agency or official of the state of Michigan; on behalf of any political subdivision of the state when submitted by its authorized legal officer, its authorized agent, or an association representing a political subdivision; or on behalf of the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan or the Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan.

(3)   An amicus curiae brief must conform to subrules (A), (B), (C) and (F), and must be filed within 21 days after the brief of the appellee has been filed or the time for filing such brief has expired, or at any other time the Court directs.

(4)   An amicus curiae may not participate in oral argument except by Court order.

(I)   Supplemental Authority. A party may file a supplemental authority as provided in MCR 7.212(F).

(J)   Extending or Shortening Time; Failure to File; Forfeiture of Oral Argument.

(1)   The time provided for filing and serving the briefs and appendixes may be shortened or extended by order of the Court on its own initiative or on motion of a party.

(2)   If the appellant fails to file the brief and appendix within the time required, the Court may dismiss the case and award costs to the appellee or affirm the judgment or order appealed.

(3)   A party filing a brief late forfeits the right to oral argument.