Preparing Your Brief

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18 Jul, 2017

A Note on Seventh Circuit Jurisdictional Statements

2019-03-18T18:47:16-05:00July 18th, 2017|Tags: , |

Federal appellate court practice can be a daunting experience, especially if you practice in multiple circuits. While the circuits share many common rules and practices, many of the circuits also have unique features that are important to be aware of. Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 28(a)(4) states that one of the things that must be [...]

12 Jul, 2017

The Supreme Court’s Mailbox Rule

2019-04-19T16:12:02-05:00July 12th, 2017|Tags: , , , |

  Supreme Court Rule 29.2 – the Court’s Mailbox Rule – operates so that a document is filed if, on or before its due date, it is: Received by the Clerk; Shipped to the Clerk through the United States Postal Service using postmarked first-class mail (a commercial postage meter cannot be used); or Handed to a third-party commercial carrier for [...]

13 Jun, 2017

The Criminal Justice Act and the Supreme Court

2019-03-18T18:47:16-05:00June 13th, 2017|Tags: , , , |

Under the Criminal Justice Act of 1964, 18 U.S.C. § 3006A, Federal criminal defendants are entitled to the appointment of counsel if they are unable to obtain adequate representation “at every stage of the proceeding from initial appearance through appeal.”  State and Federal courts have long interpreted the words “through appeal” to include most challenges [...]

2 May, 2017

Guide to Pro se In Forma Pauperis Petitions

2019-03-18T18:47:17-05:00May 2nd, 2017|Tags: , , , , |

   In forma pauperis (IFP) proceedings are those cases in which the Supreme Court allows an indigent party to file a petition for writ of certiorari without paying its $300 filing fee or preparing printed booklets (to learn about filing IFP Briefs in Opposition, click here). A petition worthy of certiorari is generally thought to [...]

27 Apr, 2017

For Want of a Comma

2019-03-18T18:47:17-05:00April 27th, 2017|Tags: , |

“For want of a comma, we have this case.” This is the opening sentence to a recent opinion from the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.  In O'Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy, No. 16-1901 (1st Cir. 2017), the First Circuit ruled on whether a missing Oxford comma in an overtime exemption statute entitles [...]

25 Apr, 2017

The Court’s Complex Filing Rules

2019-03-18T18:47:17-05:00April 25th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , |

When filing a brief in the United States Supreme Court, there are distinct formatting requirements that must be observed and followed. These requirements are set forth in Supreme Court Rule 33.1, which describes the Court’s required booklet formatting. Below are a few of the Supreme Court’s more obscure rules for filing in booklet format. Every [...]

9 Mar, 2017

The Cockle Difference

2019-03-18T18:47:18-05:00March 9th, 2017|Tags: , , |

How Is Cockle Legal Briefs Different? We strive to craft the highest quality briefs. We succeed because we are the only Supreme Court brief printer to proofread everything—with teams of two professional readers—and our staff actively pursues an intimate knowledge of Court practices and conventions. Located in the heart of the nation, we are able [...]

14 Feb, 2017

Staff Spotlight: Brian Fisher

2019-03-18T18:47:18-05:00February 14th, 2017|Tags: , , |

Cockle Legal Briefs employs attorneys, paralegals, typesetters, printers, accountants, and salesmen to produce about 1,300 Supreme Court briefs a year and files documents in every Federal court of appeals in the country.  Whatever they do, whatever position they fill, Cockle people share a passion for helping their clients.  Meet some of the people who work [...]

1 Sep, 2016

How to Draft a Winning Pro Se Petition

2019-03-18T18:47:20-05:00September 1st, 2016|Tags: , , , , |

  Petitioning the Supreme Court can be a daunting task.  Careless writing, poor formatting, and ignorance of the Court’s rules can significantly decrease the odds that your petition will be selected for review. Filing a brief fraught with errors makes it nearly impossible to win any appeal.  By developing a working knowledge of the essentials [...]