Amicus Curiae, or “Friend of the Court,” Briefs are submitted by non-parties to the case as a way of introducing information and concerns to the Court, often demonstrating that a case’s outcome may have wider effects beyond the immediate parties to the suit. Amicus Curiae Briefs can provide valuable assistance to the Court in its deliberations by presenting an argument or citing authorities not found in the Briefs of the parties, or by providing important technical or background information which the parties have not supplied. These materials can occasionally play a critical role in the Court’s rationale for a decision.
Amicus Curiae Briefs are filed in the United States Supreme Court for a variety of reasons. Some Amicus Curiae Briefs provide valuable information about legal arguments, or how a case might affect people other than the parties to the case. Some organizations file Amicus Curiae Briefs in an attempt to lobby the Supreme Court, obtain media attention, or impress their members. There are studies that have shown a positive correlation between the number of Amicus Curiae Briefs filed in support of granting certiorari, and the Court’s decision to grant certiorari.
S. Ct. Rule 37 states “