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. Postponement of oral argument may be granted, on motion, for good cause.
(a) In General.
(1) Party's Statement. Any party may file, or the court may require, a statement explaining why oral argument should, or need not be, permitted.
(2) Standards. Oral argument must be allowed in every case unless a party fails to file a brief or unless the justices, upon examination of the briefs and record, unanimously agree that oral argument is unnecessary for any of the following reasons:
(A) the appeal is frivolous.
(B) the dispositive issue or issues have been authoritatively decided.
(C) the facts and legal arguments are adequately presented in the briefs and record, and the decisional process would not be significantly aided by oral argument.
(b) Notice of Argument; Postponement; Time Allowed for Argument. The
clerk must advise all parties whether oral argument will be scheduled and, if so, the date, time, and place for argument, and the time allowed for each side. Regardless of the number of counsel on each side, the 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 upon written request at the time of filing the requesting party's last brief. A motion to postpone the argument or to allow longer argument must be filed reasonably in advance of the hearing date. A party is not obliged to use all of the time allowed, and the court may terminate the argument at any time.
(c) Order and Content of Argument. The appellant
is entitled to open and conclude opens and concludes the argument. The opening argument shall must include a fair statement of the case. Counsel will not be permitted to must not read at length from briefs, records, or authorities.
(d) Cross-Appeals 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 separate appellants or appellees support the same argument, care shall be taken to avoid duplication of argument. Unless the court directs otherwise, a cross-appeal or separate appeal must be argued when the initial appeal is argued. Separate parties should avoid duplicative argument.
Non-appearance of Parties Nonappearance of a Party. If the appellee fails to appear to present for argument, the court will hear argument on behalf of the appellant, if present must hear appellant's argument. If the appellant fails to appear for argument, the court may hear argument on behalf of the appellee the appellee's argument , if present. If the parties to the appeal fail to appear neither party appears, the case will be decided on the briefs, unless the court orders otherwise.
(f) Submission on Briefs. 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, 1981; January 1, 1988; March 1, 1994; March 1, 1997; .
Under subdivision (b), in the case of multiple appellants or appellees, each side must divide the time accorded unless additional time has been requested and granted. The omission of subdivision (g) of the Federal Rule is not intended to prevent the use of any exhibits at oral argument.
Rule 34 was revised, effective __________________, in response to the December 1, 1998, amendments to Fed.R.App.P. 34. 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 , to provide a process for the court to determine whether oral argument should or should not be permitted. The criteria to be used in making this determination are included in the rule, and the court's decision that oral argument is unnecessary must be unanimous.
SOURCES: Joint 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. Fed.R.App.P. 34.
SUPERSEDED: N.D.C.C. §§ 28-31-04, 28-31-05, 29-28-23, 29-28-24, and 29-28-25.
CROSS REFERENCE: N.D.R.App.P. 28(h) (Cross-Appeals).