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Your Statement of Facts Matter, by Kirby Griffis, Brief Right!


When lawyers get started writing a brief, they often seem to get themselves warmed up by explaining to the court what the brief is about. Or so they think. These early sections, which might be called ‘Procedural Background,’ ‘Background of the Motion,’ or something related, are a good place to look for this common briefing error.

It starts with a blitz of irrelevant dates, which may be further muddied by a seeming lack of certainty about those same dates. Here’s an example: ‘Plaintiff filed her Complaint on or about June 5, 2011.’ Why would you ever say this to the court? . . . .