RULE 29. BRIEF OF AN AMICUS CURIAE
(a) When Permitted. An
amicus curiae amicus curiae brief may be filed only with leave of court or at the court's request. An amicus brief must be limited to issues raised by the parties. The brief may be conditionally filed with the motion. A motion must identify the interest of the applicant and state the reasons why an amicus brief is desirable. Any amicus brief must be filed within the time allowed the party whose position as to affirmance or reversal the amicus brief will support unless all parties otherwise consent or the court for cause shown grants leave for later filing. If the court grants leave for late filing it shall specify the time within which an opposing party may answer. A motion of an amicus curiae to participate in the oral argument will be granted only for extraordinary reasons.
(b) Motion for Leave to File. The motion may be accompanied by the proposed brief. The motion must state:
(1) the movant's interest; and
(2) the reasons why an amicus brief is desirable and why the matters asserted are relevant to the disposition of the case.
(c) Contents and Form. An amicus brief must comply with Rule 32. In addition to
the requirements of Rule 32, the cover must identify the party or parties supported, if any,
and indicate whether the brief supports affirmance or reversal. An amicus brief need
not comply with Rule 28, but must include the following:
(1) a table of contents, with page references;
(2) a table of authorities--cases (alphabetically arranged), statutes and other authorities--with references to the pages of the brief where they are cited;
(3) a concise statement of the identity of the amicus curiae, and its interest in the case; and
(4) an argument, which may be preceded by a summary and which need not include a statement of the applicable standard of review.
(d) Length. Except by the court's permission, an amicus brief may be no more than one-half the maximum length authorized by these rules for a party's principal brief (see Rule 32(a)(7)). If the court grants a party permission to file a longer brief, that extension does not affect the length of an amicus brief.
(e) Time for Filing. An amicus curiae must file its brief within the time allowed for filing the principal brief of the party being supported. An amicus curiae that does not support either party must file its brief within the time allowed for filing the appellant's principal brief. The court may grant leave for later filing, specifying the time within which an opposing party may answer.
(f) Reply Brief. Except by the court's permission, an amicus curiae may not file a reply brief.
(g) Oral Argument. An amicus curiae may participate in oral argument only with the court's permission.
Rule 29 was amended, effective March 1, 1996; March 1, 2003.
Rule 29 was revised, effective March 1, 2003, in response to the December 1, 1998, amendments to Fed.R.App.P. 29. The language and organization of the rule were changed to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
Subdivision (a) was amended, effective March 1, 2003. New language was added to clarify that an amicus brief may deal only with issues raised by the parties.
Subdivision (b) was amended, effective March 1, 2003. New language in paragraph (2) was added to require that the motion state the relevance of the matters asserted to the disposition of the case.
Subdivision (c) was adopted, effective March 1, 2003, to eliminate any confusion as to contents and form and to require compliance with Rule 32.
Subdivision (d) was adopted, effective March 1, 2003, to establish a shorter page limit for an amicus brief than for a party's principal brief. The rationale for this limitation is that an amicus brief is supplemental--it need not address all issues or facets of a case, but only matters not adequately addressed by a party.
Subdivision (f) was adopted, effective March 1, 2003, to prohibit the filing of a reply brief by an amicus curiae without the permission of the court.
SOURCES: Joint Procedure Committee Minutes of September 27-28, 2001, pages 19-22; September 29-30, 1994, page 16; May 25-26, 1978, pages 13-14. Fed.R.App.P. 29.
CROSS REFERENCE: N.D.R.App.P. 32 (Form of Briefs, Appendices, and Other Papers).