Saturday, March 4, 2017

TORT TALK PRACTICE TIPS

THE QUESTION PRESENTED IN YOUR BRIEF COUNTS

A lot of attorneys glaze over the "Question Presented" section of a brief and, in doing so, miss an opportunity for the court to read their client's argument as set forth in a concise and forceful format that foreshadows the conclusion desired.
It is a waste to simply state in the "Question Presented" that the motion at issue should be granted or denied.

Always begin your "Question Presented" with a phrasing that suggests your position should carry the day. For example, for the movant, the "Question Presented" should be positively phrased as, "Whether the motion of the defendant, John Smith, to compel should be granted where..." and vice versa for the non-moving party.
Then, as concisely as possible, include in the "Question Presented" the pertinent facts of your case as applied to the rule of law in a manner that favors your position. 

In the end, the "Question Presented" should be a detailed statement of your legal position in a question format that suggestively asks whether your position should be accepted by the court. 

Also, take the language in your "Question Presented" and mirror it in the Conclusion section of your brief as very similar, but not identical, restatement of your ­client's position.  In other words, copy your Question Presented into your Conclusion section but change it from a question to a statement in favor of your position and polish it off with a specific statement of the relief requested.

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