Informal briefs may be authorized by the appellate court and shall contain a concise statement of the party's arguments on appeal, together with the addendum required by Rule 130.01. The informal brief shall have a cover and any paper copy may be bound by stapling.
If counsel elects, in the statement of the case, to rely upon memoranda submitted to the trial court supplemented by a short letter argument, the submission shall be covered and any paper copy may be bound by stapling. The trial court submissions and decision shall be included in the addendum.
(Amended effective for appeals taken on or after January 1, 1992; amended effective January 1, 1999; amended effective July 1, 2014.)
The formal brief of the appellant shall contain under appropriate headings and in the order here indicated:
(a) A table of contents, with page references, and an alphabetical table of cases, statutes, and other authorities cited, with references to the pages of the brief where they are cited.
(b) A concise statement of the legal issue or issues involved, omitting unnecessary detail. Each issue shall be stated as an appellate court would state the broad issue presented. Each issue shall be followed by:
(1) a description of how the issue was raised in the trial court, including citations to the record;
(2) a concise statement of the trial court's ruling;
(3) a description of how the issue was subsequently preserved for appeal, including citations to the record; and
(4) a list of the most apposite cases, not to exceed four, and the most apposite constitutional and statutory provisions.
(c) A statement of the case and the facts. A statement of the case shall first be presented identifying the trial court and the trial judge and indicating briefly the nature of the case and its disposition. There shall follow a statement of facts relevant to the grounds urged for reversal, modification or other relief. The facts must be stated fairly, with complete candor, and as concisely as possible. Where it is claimed that a verdict, finding of fact or other determination is not sustained by the evidence, the evidence, if any, tending directly or by reasonable inference to sustain the verdict, findings or determination shall be summarized. Each statement of a material fact shall be accompanied by a reference to the record, as provided in Rule 128.03.
(d) An argument. The argument may be preceded by a summary introduction and shall include the contentions of the party with respect to the issues presented, the applicable standard of appellate review for each issue, the analyses, and the citations to the authorities. Each issue shall be separately presented. Needless repetition shall be avoided.
(e) A short conclusion stating the precise relief sought.
(f) In briefs filed with the court of appeals, a party may include an optional statement as to whether the court's opinion should be precedential, nonprecedential, or an order opinion, and the party's reasons, with reference to Rule 136.01, subdivision 1, paragraph (b).
(g) The addendum required by Rule 130.02.
The formal brief of the respondent shall conform to the requirements of Rule 128.02, subdivision 1, except that a statement of the issues or of the case or facts need not be made unless the respondent is dissatisfied with the statement of the appellant. If a notice of related appeal is filed pursuant to Rule 103.02, subdivision 2, the respondent's brief shall present the issues specified in the notice of related appeal. A respondent who fails to file a brief either when originally due or upon expiration of an extension of time shall not be entitled to oral argument without leave of the appellate court.
The appellant may file a brief in reply to the brief of the respondent. The reply brief must be confined to new matter raised in the brief of the respondent.
No further briefs may be filed except with leave of the appellate court.
(Amended effective January 1, 1999; amended effective January 1, 2009; amended effective January 1, 2010; amended effective July 1, 2014; amended effective August 1, 2020.)
(a) Portions of Record Contained in Any Party's Addendum. Whenever a reference is made in the briefs to any part of the record that is reproduced in the addendum of any party, the reference shall be made to the specific pages of the addendum where the particular part of the record is reproduced.
(b) Portions of Record Not Contained in Any Party's Addendum. Whenever a reference is made to a part of the record that is not reproduced in the addendum of any party, the reference shall be made to the particular part of the record, suitably designated, and to the specific pages of it.
(c) Document Index Number. Whenever a reference is made to a part of the record, either in a brief or in the table of contents of an addendum, the reference should be made to the particular part of the record using the Document Index Number from the trial court Register of Actions, if available, and to the specific pages of it. Abbreviations that clearly direct the court to particular portions of the record, whether or not designated by a Document Index Number, are acceptable.
(Amended effective January 1, 2009; amended effective July 1, 2014; amended effective July 1, 2016.)
If determination of the issues presented requires the study of statutes, ordinances, rules, regulations, etc., or relevant parts of them, that are not readily available in a publicly available electronic database or Minnesota law libraries, they shall be reproduced in the brief or addendum.
(Amended effective July 1, 2014.)
If pertinent and significant authorities come to a party's attention after the party's brief has been filed or after oral argument but before decision, a party may promptly file a letter with the clerk of the appellate courts setting forth the citations. The letter must state without argument the reasons for the supplemental citations, referring either to the page of the brief or to the point argued orally. Proof of service shall be made as defined by Rule 125.04. Any response must be made promptly and must be similarly limited.
(Added effective March 1, 2001; amended effective July 1, 2014.)