Thursday, December 6, 2012

How Many Pages Should Your Notice of Supplemental Authority Be?


 Maybe I'm one of those old fart lawyers Brian Tannebaum is always writing about, but I was taught that a notice of supplemental authority should be a one-page document listing the new case, with at most one line or two explaining its relevance.

It shouldn't be an opportunity to engage in another set of briefing that renders the federal rules superfluous.

But we all know lawyers who can't resist using the new case to reargue points already made in the briefs, and who go way overboard -- causing you a moral dilemma:  should you respond in kind?  Move to strike?  Turn the other cheek and ignore the sharp practice?  Hope the judge does something sua sponte?

Case in point:

This supplemental authority is fairly restrained, though you could argue it goes a paragraph too far.

But like the old Cold War doctrine of MAD, an overwhelming and devastating response was inevitable.

And here it is -- three full pages of responsive argument.

Not willing to leave well enough alone, here is the "reply" in support of the notice of supplemental authority -- four(!) more pages of pure argument.

Aren't there page limits in briefs for a reason?






20 comments:

Anonymous said...

You turned water into wine again.

Anonymous said...

Probably not too far - it seems helpful, an I do know suspect that Judge Williams will be unappreciative of a fair minded debate about its worth.

Anonymous said...

It should be as follows. Caption: "Notice of Serving Supplemental Authority." Body: "Party A submits decision B in support of Party A's motion for C." Anything more is Amatuer Night at the Apollo. And SFL's right: it undermines the limitations on pages and on memoranda. At any rate, judges know whether a decision supports a motion or not. And they know whether a decision is distinguishable or not.

Anonymous said...

Ditto

Anonymous said...

SFL - your blog is too good to leave up that trash of a comment from 8:31 - totally wrecks what you got going here.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole blogged about being at the Miami Heat game last night but forgot that he tweeted about watching some shitty movie. Why can't he just say that he watched the game at home like a normal person? Instead of coming off like a mediocre fool who can't even lie correctly. I posted my comment here because he doesn't post comments that point out the inconsistencies or lies on his blog.

Fake Rumpole said...

Carlos Martinez troll aka 9:24 am,

Stop attacking me! It's not my fault that all his as pds continually email me about the bull shit that goes on at his office like the candy bar thank you as a "surprise bonus" last year around this time of year.

You need to go crawl into a hole and die!

Rumpole said...

Some people can be in two places at the same time. Even if it's a physical and logical impossibility. Deal with it.

Rumpole said...

I love Carlos Martinez and dream of him on a regular basis. That's why I blog about how he ruins his office. I have nothing better to do with my time.

Anonymous said...

It looks like Carlitos or one of his minions hacked into Rumpole's account.

Don't they have real work to do?

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Tom Smith said...

At any rate, judges know whether a decision supports a motion or not. And they know whether a decision is distinguishable or not.
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Why can't he just say that he watched the game at home like a normal person.
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Myacandheat said...

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