Title 10 - Briefs
RAP 10.1: BRIEFS WHICH MAY BE FILED
(a) Scope of Title. The rules in this title apply only to the briefs referred to in this rule, unless a particular rule indicates a different application is intended.
(b) Briefs Which May Be Filed in Any Review. The following briefs may be filed in any review: (1) a brief of appellant or petitioner, (2) a brief of respondent, and (3) a reply brief of appellant or petitioner.
(c) Reply Brief of Respondent. If the respondent is also seeking review, the respondent may file a brief in reply to the response the appellant or petitioner has made to the issues presented by respondent's review.
(d) [Reserved; see rule 10.10]
(e) Amicus Curiae Brief. An amicus curiae brief may be filed only if permission is obtained as provided in rule 10.6. If an amicus curiae brief is filed, a brief in answer to the brief of amicus curiae may be filed by a party.
(f) Briefs in Cases Involving Cross Review. If a cross review is filed, the party first filing a notice of appeal or notice of discretionary review is deemed the appellant or petitioner for the purpose of this title, unless the parties otherwise agree or the appellate court otherwise orders.
The following briefs may be filed in cases involving cross review: (1) brief of appellant, (2) brief of respondent/cross appellant, (3) reply brief of appellant/cross respondent, and (4) reply brief of cross appellant.
(g) Briefs in Consolidated Cases and in Cases Involving Multiple Parties. In cases consolidated for the purpose of review and in a case with more than one party to a side, a party may (1) join with one or more other parties in a single brief, or (2) file a separate brief and adopt by reference any part of the brief of another.
(h) Other Briefs. The appellate court may in a particular case, on its own motion or on motion of a party, authorize or direct the filing of briefs on the merits other than those listed in this rule.
Rule 13.7, Proceedings (in Supreme Court) After Acceptance of Review (of Court of Appeals decision), (a) Procedure; Rule 16.10, Personal Restraint Petition--Briefs.
[Amended December 5, 2002]
RAP 10.2: TIME FOR FILING BRIEFS
(a) Brief of Appellant or Petitioner. The brief of an appellant or petitioner should be filed with the appellate court within 45 days after the report of proceedings is filed in the appellate court; or, if the record on review does not include a report of proceedings, within 45 days after the party seeking review has filed the designation of clerk's papers and exhibits in the trial court.
(b) Brief of Respondent in Civil Case. The brief of a respondent in a civil case should be filed with the appellate court within 30 days after service of the brief of appellant or petitioner.
(c) Brief of Respondent in Criminal Case. The brief of a respondent in a criminal case should be filed with the appellate court within 60 days after service of the brief of appellant or petitioner.
(d) Reply Brief. A reply brief of an appellant or petitioner should be filed with the appellate court within 30 days after service of the brief of respondent unless the court orders otherwise.
(e) [Reserved; see rule 10.10]
(f) Brief of Amicus Curiae. Unless the court sets a different date, or allows a later date upon a showing of particular justification, a brief of amicus curiae should be filed as follows.
(1) Supreme Court. A brief of amicus curiae should be received by the court and counsel of record for the parties and any other amicus curiae not later than 45 days before oral argument or consideration of the merits.
(2) Court of Appeals. A brief of amicus curiae should be received by the court and counsel of record for the parties and any other amicus curiae not later than 45 days after the due date for the last brief of respondent permitted under rule 10.2(b).
(g) Answer to Brief of Amicus Curiae. A brief in answer to the brief of amicus curiae may be filed with the appellate court not later than the date fixed by the appellate court.
(h) Service of Briefs. At the time a party files a brief, the party should serve one copy on every other party and on any amicus curiae, and file proof of service with the appellate court. In a criminal case in which the defendant is the appellant, appellant's counsel shall serve the appellant and file proof of service with the appellate court. Service and proof of service should be made in accordance with rules 18.5 and 18.6.
(i) Sanctions for Late Filing and Service. The appellate court will ordinarily impose sanctions under rule 18.9 for failure to timely file and serve a brief.
(Originally effective July 1, 1976; amended effective September 1, 1990; September 1, 1991; September 1, 1994; September 1, 1998; September 1, 1999; December 24, 2002; September 1, 2006; September 1, 2014; September 1, 2015.)
Rule 18.6, Computation of Time, (c) Filing by mail.
RAP 10.3: CONTENT OF BRIEF
(a) Brief of Appellant or Petitioner. The brief of the appellant or petitioner should contain under appropriate headings and in the order here indicated:
(1) Title Page. A title page, which is the cover.
(2) Tables. A table of contents, with page references, and a table of cases (alphabetically arranged), statutes and other authorities cited, with references to the pages of the brief where cited.
(3) Introduction. A concise introduction. This section is optional. The introduction need not contain citations to the record for authority.
(4) Assignments of Error. A separate concise statement of each error a party contends was made by the trial court, together with the issues pertaining to the assignments of error.
(5) Statement of the Case. A fair statement of the facts and procedure relevant to the issues presented for review, without argument. Reference to the record must be included for each factual statement.
(6) Argument. The argument in support of the issues presented for review, together with citations to legal authority and references to relevant parts of the record. The argument may be preceded by a summary. The court ordinarily encourages a concise statement of the standard of review as to each issue.
(7) Conclusion. A short conclusion stating the precise relief sought.
(8) Appendix. An appendix to the brief if deemed appropriate by the party submitting the brief. An appendix may not include materials not contained in the record on review without permission from the appellate court, except as provided in rule 10.4(c).
(b) Brief of Respondent. The brief of respondent should conform to section (a) and answer the brief of appellant or petitioner. A statement of the issues and a statement of the case need not be made if respondent is satisfied with the statement in the brief of appellant or petitioner. If a respondent is also seeking review, the brief of respondent must state the assignments of error and the issues pertaining to those assignments of error presented for review by respondent and include argument of those issues.
(c) Reply Brief. A reply brief should conform with subsections (1), (2), (6), (7), and (8) of section (a) and be limited to a response to the issues in the brief to which the reply brief is directed.
(d) [Reserved; see rule 10.10.]
(e) Amicus Curiae Brief. The brief of amicus curiae should conform to section (a), except assignments of error are not required and the brief should set forth a separate section regarding the identity and interest of amicus and be limited to the issues of concern to amicus. Amicus must review all briefs on file and avoid repetition of matters in other briefs.
(f) Answer to Brief of Amicus Curiae. The brief in answer to a brief of amicus curiae should be limited solely to the new matters raised in the brief of amicus curiae.
(g) Special Provision for Assignments of Error. A separate assignment of error for each instruction which a party contends was improperly given or refused must be included with reference to each instruction or proposed instruction by number. A separate assignment of error for each finding of fact a party contends was improperly made must be included with reference to the finding by number. The appellate court will only review a claimed error which is included in an assignment of error or clearly disclosed in the associated issue pertaining thereto.
(h) Assignments of Error on Review of Certain Administrative Orders. In addition to the assignments of error required by rule 10.3(a)(3) and 10.3(g), the brief of an appellant or respondent who is challenging an administrative adjudicative order under chapter 34.05 RCW shall set forth a separate concise statement of each error which a party contends was made by the agency issuing the order, together with the issues pertaining to each assignment of error.
Form 5, Title Page for all Briefs and Petition for Review; Form 6, Brief of Appellant; Rule 3.4, Title of Case and
Designation of Parties; Rule 18.1, Attorney Fees and Expenses, (b) Argument in brief.
[Adopted effective July 1, 1976; amended effective September 1, 1985; September 1, 1994; September 1, 1997;
September 1, 1998; December 24, 2002; September 1, 2006; amended effective September 1, 2010; September 1, 2014.]
RAP 10.4: PREPARATION AND FILING OF BRIEF BY PARTY
(a) Typing or Printing Brief. Briefs shall conform to the following requirements:
(1) An original and one legible, clean, and reproducible copy of the brief must be filed with the appellate court. The original brief should be printed or typed in black on 20-pound substance 8-1/2 by 11-inch white paper. Margins should be at least 2 inches on the left side and 1-1/2 inches on the right side and on the top and bottom of each page. The brief shall not contain any tabs, colored pages, or binding and should be stapled in the left-hand upper corner.
(2) The text of any brief typed or printed must appear double spaced and in print as 12 point or larger type in the following fonts or their equivalent: Times New Roman, Courier, CG Times, Arial, or in typewriter fonts, pica or elite. The same typeface and print size should be standard throughout the brief, except that footnotes may appear in print as 10 point or larger type and be the equivalent of single spaced.
Quotations may be the equivalent of single spaced. Except for material in an appendix, the typewritten or printed material in the brief shall not be reduced or condensed by photographic or other means.
(b) Length of Brief. A brief of appellant, petitioner, or respondent should not exceed 50 pages.
Appellant's reply brief should not exceed 25 pages. An amicus curiae brief, or answer thereto, should not exceed 20 pages. In a cross-appeal, the brief of appellant, brief of respondent/cross appellant, and reply brief of appellant/cross respondent should not exceed 50 pages and the reply brief of the cross appellant should not exceed 25 pages. For the purpose of determining compliance with this rule appendices, the title sheet, table of contents, and table of authorities are not included. For compelling reasons the court may grant a motion to file an over-length brief.
(c) Text of Statute, Rule, Jury Instruction, or the Like. If a party presents an issue which requires study of a statute, rule, regulation, jury instruction, finding of fact, exhibit, or the like, the party should type the material portions of the text out verbatim or include them by copy in the text or in an appendix to the brief.
(d) Motion in Brief. A party may include in a brief only a motion which, if granted, would preclude hearing the case on the merits. The answer to a motion within a brief may be made within the brief of the answering party in the time allowed for filing the brief.
(e) Reference to Party. References to parties by such designations as "appellant" and "respondent" should be kept to a minimum. It promotes clarity to use the designations used in the lower court, the actual names of the parties, or descriptive terms such as "the employee," "the injured person," and "the taxpayer."
(f) Reference to Record. A reference to the record should designate the page and part of the record.
Exhibits should be referred to by number. The clerk's papers should be abbreviated as "CP"; exhibits should be abbreviated as "Ex"; and the report of proceedings should be abbreviated as "RP." Suitable abbreviations for other recurrent references may be used.
(g) Citation Format. Citations should conform with the format prescribed by the Reporter of Decisions pursuant to GR 14(d). The format requirements of GR 14(a) - (b) do not apply to briefs filed in an appellate court.
(h) Unpublished Opinions. [Reserved. See GR 14.1.]
[Amended December 23, 2002; September 1, 2003; September 1, 2006; September 1, 2007; September 1, 2010]
RAP 10.5: REPRODUCTION AND SERVICE OF BRIEFS BY CLERK
(a) Reproduction of Brief. The appellate court clerk will arrange for the economical reproduction of each brief and bill the party or amicus filing the brief for the cost of reproduction. Each brief will be reproduced in the number of copies deemed necessary by the commissioner or clerk. The party or amicus must pay the cost of reproduction of the brief within 10 days after receiving the bill from the clerk. The appellate court commissioner or clerk may permit, under appropriate standards, a governmental party to reproduce and directly supply to the commissioner or clerk the number of copies required by the court in lieu of reproduction of the briefs being made by the court.
(b) Distribution of Brief. A party filing a brief must serve it in accordance with rules 10.2(h) and 18.5(a). The state law librarian shall determine how many copies of briefs from the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals are to be transmitted to the State Law Library. The briefs will be transmitted by the clerks and provided at no cost to the State Law Library.
(c) Notice to Appellant in Criminal Case when Defendant is Appellant. In a criminal case, the clerk will, at the time of filing of defendant/appellant's brief, advise the defendant/appellant of the provisions of rule 10.10.
[Amended December 5, 2002; September 1, 2006.]
RAP 10.6: AMICUS CURIAE BRIEF
(a) When Allowed by Motion. The appellate court may, on motion, grant permission to file an amicus curiae brief only if all parties consent or if the filing of the brief would assist the appellate court. An amicus curiae brief may be filed only by an attorney authorized to practice law in this state, or by a member in good standing of the Bar of another state in association with an attorney authorized to practice law in this state.
(b) Motion. A motion to file an amicus curiae brief must include a statement of (1) applicants interest and the person or group applicant represents, (2) applicants familiarity with the issues involved in the review and with the scope of the argument presented or to be presented by the parties, (3) specific issues to which the amicus curiae brief will be directed, and (4) applicants reason for believing that additional argument is necessary on these specific issues. The brief of amicus curiae may be filed with the motion.
(c) On Request of the Appellate Court. The appellate court may ask for an amicus brief at any stage of review, and establish appropriate timelines for the filing of the amicus brief and answer thereto.
(d) Objection to Motion. An objection to a motion to file an amicus curiae brief must be received by the appellate court and counsel of record for the parties and the applicant not later than 5 business days after receipt of the motion.
(e) Disposition of Motions. The Supreme Court and each division of the Court of Appeals shall establish by general order the manner of disposition of a motion to file an amicus curiae brief, including whether such disposition is reviewable or subject to reconsideration by the particular court.
(Amended September 1, 1999.)
RAP 10.7: SUBMISSION OF IMPROPER BRIEF
If a party submits a brief that fails to comply with the requirements of Title 10, the appellate court, on its own initiative or on the motion of a party, may (1) order the brief returned for correction or replacement within a specified time, (2) order the brief stricken from the files with leave to file a new brief within a specified time, or (3) accept the brief. The appellate court will ordinarily impose sanctions on a party or counsel for a party who files a brief that fails to comply with these rules.
[Amended December 24, 2002]
RAP 10.8: ADDITIONAL AUTHORITIES
A party or amicus curiae may file a statement of additional authorities. The statement should not contain argument, but should identify the issue for which each authority is offered. The statement must be served and filed prior to the filing of the decision on the merits or, if there is a motion for reconsideration, prior to the filing of the decision on the motion.
[Amended effective September 1, 1999, December 5, 2002]
RAP 10.9: CORRESPONDING BRIEFS ON CD-ROM
(a) Filing Corresponding Briefs on Compact Disc. The submission of briefs and appendices on compact disc read-only memory (CD-ROM), referred to in this rule as corresponding briefs, filed as companions to printed briefs is allowed and encouraged, provided that the Supreme Court and each Division of the Court of Appeals may by general order vary any of the conditions of this Rule, and may prohibit the filing of corresponding briefs.
(b) Conditions of filing. A party may file corresponding briefs upon 14 days notice to all other parties and the court, subject to the following requirements:
(1) Content. A CD-ROM with corresponding briefs must contain all appellate briefs filed by all parties. Corresponding briefs must be identical in content to the paper briefs. Corresponding briefs may provide hypertext links to the report of proceedings and clerks papers and to materials cited in the briefs such as cases, statutes, treatises, law review articles, and similar authorities. If any briefs are hyperlinked, all briefs must be similarly hyperlinked by the submitting party. All materials to which a hyperlink is provided must be included on the disc.
(2) Format. Corresponding briefs must come fully equipped with their own viewing program; or, if the disk does not contain its own viewing program, the briefs must be viewable within a version of a program such as Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Word Viewer, or WordPerfect that is downloadable from the Internet at no cost to the user.
(3) Statement Concerning Instructions and Viruses. Corresponding briefs must be accompanied by a statement, preferably within or attached to the packaging, that
(A) sets forth the instructions for viewing the briefs and the minimum equipment required for viewing; and
(B) verifies the absence of computer viruses and lists the software used to ensure that the briefs are virus-free.
(c) Joint Submission. Upon receiving notice of intent to file corresponding briefs, within 14 days any other party may file notice of intent to join in the submission. When one or more parties join in the submission, the parties shall cooperate in preparing a joint submission. Absent agreement to the contrary, each party shall arrange for preparation of its own briefs for the joint submission and the party first giving notice shall create the CD-ROM.
(d) Non-Joint Submission. No party is required to prepare a corresponding brief. A party shall cooperate in good faith in the preparation of corresponding briefs by expeditiously providing the submitting party with the party's brief or briefs in electronic format, if available.
(e) Time of Filing. Corresponding briefs must be filed no later than 60 days after the final reply brief. This rule does not affect deadlines for paper briefs. Additional time may be granted for completion of the corresponding briefs.
(f) Costs. The costs incurred in preparing and filing corresponding briefs are not recoverable costs under Title 14 or as attorney fees under Title 18 of these Rules.
[December 5, 2002]
RAP 10.10: STATEMENT OF ADDITIONAL GROUNDS FOR REVIEW
(a) Statement Permitted. In a criminal case on direct appeal, the defendant may file a pro se statement of additional grounds for review to identify and discuss those matters related to the decision under review that the defendant believes have not been adequately addressed by the brief filed by the defendant's counsel.
(b) Length and Legibility. The statement, which shall be limited to no more than 50 pages, may be submitted in handwriting so long as it is legible and can be reproduced by the clerk.
(c) Citations; Identification of Errors. Reference to the record and citation to authorities are not necessary or required, but the appellate court will not consider a defendant's statement of additional grounds for review if it does not inform the court of the nature and occurrence of alleged errors. Except as required in cases in which counsel files a motion to withdraw as set forth in RAP 18.3(a)(2), the appellate court is not obligated to search the record in support of claims made in a defendant's statement of additional grounds for review. Only documents that are contained in the record on review should be attached or referred to in the statement.
(d) Time for Filing. The statement of additional grounds for review should be filed within 30 days after service upon the defendant of the brief prepared by defendant's counsel and the mailing of a notice from the clerk of the appellate court advising the defendant of the substance of this rule. The clerk will advise all parties if the defendant files a statement of additional grounds for review.
(e) Report of Proceedings. If within 30 days after service of the brief prepared by defendant's counsel, defendant requests a copy of the verbatim report of proceedings from defendant's counsel, counsel should promptly serve a copy of the verbatim report of proceedings on the defendant and should file in the appellate court proof of such service. The pro se statement of additional grounds for review should then be filed within 30 days after service of the verbatim report of proceedings. The cost for producing and mailing the verbatim report of proceedings for an indigent defendant will be reimbursed to counsel from the Office of Public Defense in accordance with Title 15 of these rules.
(f) Additional Briefing. The appellate court may, in the exercise of its discretion, request additional briefing from counsel to address issues raised in the defendant's pro se statement.
[Adopted effective December 24, 2002; amended effective September 1, 2014.]