RULE 34. ORAL ARGUMENT
(a) Notice of Argument; Postponement. The clerk shall inform all parties of the time and place at which oral argument will be heard.
A request for Postponement of theoral argument must be made by motion filed reasonably in advance of the date fixed for hearing may be granted, on motion, for good cause.
(b) Time Allowed for Argument.
Arguments on motions will be limited to 15 minutes for each side Regardless of the number of counsel on each side, and in all other argumentsthe appellant will be allowed 30 minutes and the appellee will be allowed 20 minutes to present argument. Arguments on motions will be granted only in extraordinary circumstances. Additional time may be granted by the supreme court, a justice, or the clerk of the Supreme Court upon written request addressed to the clerk no later than the at the time of filing date of the requesting party's last brief. A party is not obliged to use all of the time allowed, and the court may terminate the argument whenever in its judgment further argument is unnecessary at any time.
(c) Order and Content of Argument. The appellant is entitled to open and conclude the argument. The opening argument shall include a fair statement of the case. Counsel will not be permitted to read at length from briefs, records, or authorities.
(d) Cross and Separate Appeals. A cross or separate appeal shall be argued with the initial appeal at a single argument, unless the court otherwise directs.
If a case involves a cross-appeal, the party who first files a notice of appeal, or if the notices are filed on the same day the plaintiff in the proceeding below, is the appellant for the purpose of this rule unless the parties otherwise agree or the court otherwise directs. If separate appellants or appelleessupport the same argument, care shall be taken to avoid duplication of argument.
(e) Non-appearance of Parties. If the appellee fails to appear to present argument, the court will hear argument on behalf of the appellant, if present. If the appellant fails to appear, the court may hear argument on behalf of the appellee, if present. If the parties to the appeal fail to appear, the case will be decided on the briefs unless the court orders otherwise.
(f) Submission on Briefs.
By agreement of the parties, a case may be submitted for decision Any party may submit its argument on the briefs, but the court may direct that the case be argued.
Rule 34 was amended, effective July 1, 19981; January 1, 1988; March 1, 1994; March 1, 1997.
This rule is derived from Rule 34, FRAppP. Subdivision (b) was amended, effective July 1, 1981, to reduce the time allowed for oral argument for the appellant from 45 minutes to 30 minutes and for the appellee from 30 minutes to 20 minutes. Argument on motions is limited to 15 minutes on each side. It is contemplated these periods will be liberally extended upon a showing of good cause. In Under subdivision (b), in the case of multiple appellants or appellees, it is contemplated that each side must divide the time accorded , unless additional time has been requested and granted. Subdivision (e) was amended, effective January 1, 1988, to track the 1986 amendment to the Federal Rule. The amendment is technical in nature with no substantive change. The omission of subdivision (g) of the Federal Rule is not intended to prevent the use of any exhibits at oral argument. Subdivision (d) was amended, effective March 1, 1994, to track the 1991 federal amendment, by providing that the party who first files a notice of appeal is the appellant. If the notices are filed the same day, the plaintiff in the proceeding below is the appellant.
SOURCES: Procedure Committee Minutes of September 28-29, 1995, page 13; January 28-29, 1993, page 11; February 19-20, 1987, page 8; September 18-19, 1986, pages 20-21; April 26, 1984, page 30; January 12-13, 1978, pages 22-23. Rule 34, FRAppP.
STATUTES AFFECTED: Superseded: 28-31-04, 28-31-05, 29-28-23, 29-28-24, and 29-28-25, NDCC.
CROSS REFERENCE: Rule 28(h), NDRAppP (Cross-Appeals).