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Bryan Garner Says: Put Your Citations in Footnotes, by Rich Cassidy, On Lawyering Blog


After posting on one judge’s opinion of against citations in footnotes, for the sake of balance, here is Bryan Garner’s opinion against putting them anywhere else but footnotes.

When it comes to writing briefs, let the court rules dictate which method you use. If a court or judge goes to the trouble to address such details, there is a reason. Ignore the court’s preference at your own risk! -CCE

[I]n the February 2014 issue of the ABA Journal, and in the corresponding ABA Journal Law News “Bryan Garner on Words” column, “Textual Citations Make Legal Writing Onerous, for Lawyers and Nonlawyers Alike,” Garner promotes a suggestion for writing briefs and memoranda.   . . . The suggestion is simple: Instead of including bibliographical material —  the numerical citation used to find a case or legal authority  — in the text of a  legal document, Garner suggests publishing this material in a footnote.