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Rules



These rules are not intended to reiterate all applicable laws. Where the word "counsel" has been utilized, this will include pro se parties.

This publication contains the rules and all amendments thereto made through July 24, 2014.


VII. BRIEFS

Rule 23. Time of Filing; Contempt; Dismissal.

(a) Appellant's brief, which shall contain as Part 2 an enumeration of errors, shall be filed within 20 days after the appeal is docketed. Failure to file within that time, unless extended upon motion for good cause shown, may result in the dismissal of the appeal, and may subject the offender to contempt. See Rules 7 and 13.

Appellant's motion for extension of time to file brief and enumeration of errors must be filed prior to the date the documents are due or the Court may dismiss the appeal.

(b) Appellee's brief shall be filed within 40 days after the appeal is docketed or 20 days after the filing of appellant's brief, whichever is later. Failure to timely file may result in non-consideration of the brief and may subject counsel to contempt. See Rule 13. A brief shall be filed by the appellee in all criminal appeals when the State is the appellee; and upon failure to file such brief, the State’s representative may be subject to contempt.

(c) Appellant may file a reply brief within 20 days from the date of filing of appellee's brief. Appellee has no right to respond to appellant's reply brief except as permitted under Rule 27.

Rule 24. Preparation.

(a) Briefs shall be limited to an initial appellant's brief, a responding appellee's brief, and a reply brief of the appellant. Other briefs shall be accepted only if filed as an Amicus Curiae brief or a supplemental brief. See Rules 26 and 27. Briefs shall not be accepted unless filed by a pro se party, a member of the State Bar of Georgia admitted to the Court, or an attorney granted a courtesy appearance in accordance with Rule 9 (c). Counsel are required to file an original and two copies of their brief for each docketed appeal, including companion cases and cross appeals.

(b) Conformity to Rule 1 and Rule 6.

Briefs shall be filed in conformity with Rule 1 (a) and (c) and Rule 6.

(c) Margins.

Writing shall be on only one side of each sheet with a margin of not less than two inches at the top and a margin of at least one inch on the sides and bottom of each page.

(d) Citations.

All citations of cases shall be by name of the case as well as by volume, page and year of the Official Report. Cases not yet reported shall be cited by the Court of Appeals or Supreme Court case number and date of decision.

(e) Pages to be Numbered.

The pages of each brief shall be sequentially numbered with Arabic numerals at the bottom of the pages.

(f) Limitation as to Length.

Briefs and responsive briefs shall be limited to 30 pages in civil cases and 50 pages in criminal cases including exhibits, and appendices, except upon written motion directed to the Clerk and approved by the Court. Appellant's reply brief shall be limited to 15 pages. See Rule 27 for additional briefs. With respect to all briefs and responsive briefs, tables of content, tables of citations, cover sheets and certificates of service shall not be counted toward the applicable page limit.

(g) Attachments and Exhibits.

Documents attached to an appellate brief, which have not been certified by the clerk of the trial court as a part of the appellate record and forwarded to this Court, shall not be considered on appeal.

(h) Address of Defendant.

Counsel for defendant shall include the address of the defendant in a criminal case on the face of the brief and shall notify the Court of any change of address.

Rule amended November 1st, 2012.

Rule 25. Structure and Content.

(a) Appellant.

The brief of appellant shall consist of three parts:

  1. Part One shall contain a succinct and accurate statement of the proceedings below and the material facts relevant to the appeal and the citation of such parts of the record or transcript essential to a consideration of the errors complained of, and a statement of the method by which each enumeration of error was preserved for consideration. Record and transcript citations shall be to the volume or part of the record or transcript and the page numbers that appear on the appellate record or transcript as sent from the trial court.

  2. Part Two shall consist of the enumeration of errors.

  3. Part Three shall contain the argument and citation of authorities. It shall also include a concise statement of the applicable standard of review with supporting authority for each issue presented in the brief.

(b) Appellee.

The brief of appellee shall be divided in the following manner:

  1. Part One shall point out any material inaccuracy or incompleteness of appellant's statement of facts and any additional statement of facts deemed necessary, plus such additional parts of the record or transcript deemed material. Failure to do so shall constitute consent to a decision based on the appellant's statement of facts. Except as controverted, appellant's statement of facts may be accepted by this Court as true.

  2. Part Two shall contain appellee's argument and the citation of authorities as to each enumeration of error. It shall also include the standard of review if different from that contended by the appellant.

(c) General Provisions.

  1. Sequence of Argument.

    The sequence of arguments in the briefs shall follow the order of the enumeration of errors, and shall be numbered accordingly.

  2. Unsupported Claim of Error; References to Record and Transcripts.

    Any enumeration of error which is not supported in the brief by citation of authority or argument may be deemed abandoned.

    1. Each enumerated error shall be supported in the brief by specific reference to the record or transcript. In the absence of such reference, the Court will not search for or consider such enumeration.

    2. A contention that certain matters are not supported by the record may be answered by reference to particular pages where they appear.

    3. Reference to the record should be indicated by specific volume or part of the record and by (R-Page Number of the Record). Reference to the transcript should be indicated by specific volume or part of the transcript and by (T-Page Number of the Transcript). Reference to a motion transcript should be indicated by (MT-Page Number of the Transcript and date of the hearing).

  3. Sealing Briefs or Motions.
    No briefs or motions shall be filed under seal unless counsel has moved the Court for permission to file under seal and the Court has granted such motion.

    Rule 26. Amicus Curiae Briefs.

    Amicus curiae briefs may be filed without leave of Court, disclosing the identity and interest of the person or group on whose behalf the brief is filed and limited to issues properly raised by the parties. Only members of the Bar of this Court or attorneys appearing by courtesy may file amicus curiae briefs. Amicus curiae briefs shall conform to Rule 24(b)-(g).

    Rule 27. Supplemental Briefs.

    (a) Briefs of the parties shall be limited to an appellant’s brief, an appellee’s brief and an appellant’s reply brief. Supplemental briefs may be filed only by leave of Court. Counsel may file a motion for permission to file supplemental briefs. Counsel may not file a supplemental brief contemporaneously with the motion, but may include a copy of the supplemental brief with the motion for permission to file as an exhibit. Counsel shall file a supplemental brief with an original and two copies, not to exceed 15 pages only after permission to file is granted. A certificate of service must be attached to the supplemental brief and service must be made to opposing counsel.

    Rule amended April 19th, 2010.

    (b) Parties are not permitted to file letter briefs nor letter cites. Any communication with the Court regarding recent authority which comes to the attention of a party subsequent to the filing of such party's brief or after oral argument, but before decision, must be filed in compliance with Rule 27(a) above as a supplemental brief. Any response shall be made promptly and in accordance with this rule.