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Lawyers can write shorter, but it'll cost them - Appellate Practice News

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Appellate Practice News


Posted on: Oct 20, 2016

By Josh S. Tatum, Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP

Noah Feldman writes in BloombergView about the looming reduction in word limits in the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure: It may not seem that significant to a civilian. But a rule-change that will lower the maximum length of appellate briefs from 14,000 words to 13,000 words, effective December 1, is getting plenty of pushback from the lawyers who specialize in federal appeals. To the readers, a 7 percent reduction in legalese is definitely good news. Yet to the writers, it could mean a 7 percent reduction in billable hours -- and in revenue. That’s no small matter. The economics of appellate law are already pretty tenuous from the standpoint of managing partners who employ appellate specialists, often against their will. Read the full article here.

Read the current Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure here.

Read the proposed rule changes to take effect December 1 here.

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