Rule 30: Form of Briefs and Other Papers.



(a) Production Methods; Paper.  Briefs, transcripts or statements, applications, answers in opposition, petitions, motions, supporting papers, and objections should be produced on opaque, unglazed white paper by any printing, duplicating, or copying process that provides a clear black image. The use of recycled paper with the highest feasible percentage of postconsumer waste content is recommended and encouraged. Original typewritten pages may be used, but not carbon copies except on behalf of parties allowed to proceed as indigent persons. All printed matters should be on paper 6⅛ by 9¼ inches in type not smaller than 11 point and type matter 4¼ by 7¼ inches. If not printed, copies should be on paper 8½ by 11 inches, double spaced, except for quoted matter, which may be single spaced, with the text (1) when typewriter generated not smaller than standard elite type or (2) when computer generated not smaller than times new roman 12 point font and, in either event, not to exceed 6½ by 9½ inches on the page. Papers should be numbered on the bottom and fastened on the left.

(b) Content of Front Covers of the Briefs.  The front covers of the briefs shall contain: (1) the number of the case in the appellate court and the name of that court; (2) the title of the case as it appeared in the trial court, except that the status of each party in the appellate court shall also be indicated; (3) the nature of the proceeding in the appellate court and the name of the court, agency or board below; (4) the title of the document; and (5) the name and address of counsel or, if unrepresented by counsel, the party filing the brief.

(c) Colors of Covers of the Briefs.  If available, the colors of the covers shall be: the brief of the appellant, blue; the brief of the appellee, red; reply briefs, gray; briefs of amicus curiae, green.

(d) Caption on Other Papers.  Papers other than briefs addressed to the appellate court shall contain a caption setting forth: (1) the number of the case in the appellate court and the name of that court, (2) the title of the case as it appeared in the trial court, (3) a brief descriptive title indicating the purpose of the paper.

(e) Word Limitations of Briefs and Other Papers. Except by order of the court, briefs and other specifically referenced papers shall comply with the following word limitations: (1)  principal briefs and applications pursuant to Rule 11 shall be limited to 15,000 words, (2) replybriefs, answers pursuant to Rule 11, and supplemental briefs pursuant to Rule 11 shall be limited to 5,000 words, and (3) amicus briefs shall be limited to 7,500 words.

The following sections of a brief and other referenced papers shall be excluded from these word limitations: Title/Cover page, Table of Contents, Table of Authorities, Certificate of Compliance, Attorney Signature Block, and Certificate of Service.

All briefs and other papers subject to word limitations under these rules must include a certificate by the attorney or unrepresented party that the brief or other paper complies with the applicable word limitation and must state the number of words in the brief or other paper. The person certifying compliance may rely on the word count of the word processing system used to prepare the brief or other paper.

[As amended by order entered May 25, 1993, effective July 1, 1993.; by order filed January 13, 2012, effective July 1, 2012; by order filed December 18, 2012, effective July 1, 2013 and by order filed December 14, 2021, effective July 1, 2022.]

Advisory Commission Comments.

This rule adopts a uniform system of page size for briefs, transcripts, applications, answers in opposition, petitions, motions, supporting papers, and objections. This rule permits, in effect, the use of any process, other than the carbon copy process, that produces a clean, readable page. It should be noted that while appellate papers may be commercially printed, under Rule 40(f) of these rules the cost of reproducing appellate papers is taxable at a rate not higher than that generally charged for photocopying.

Court and Advisory Commission Comments [1993].

It is the public policy of the State of Tennessee to encourage recycling and the use of recycled products and materials. This policy is reflected in the Tennessee Solid Waste Planning and Recovery Act (title 68, ch. 211, part 6) and in the Solid Waste Management Act of 1991 (title 68, ch. 211, part 8). The underlined portion of Rule 30(a) denotes the addition to Rule 30(a) effective July 1, 1993, in which the Court recommends and encourages that all papers filed in the Tennessee courts be submitted on recycled paper.

Advisory Commission Comments [2012].

Paragraph (a) is amended to specify the minimum font size for non-printed papers generated by a computer.

Advisory Commission Comments [2013].

Paragraph (a) of the rule was amended to replace the term “poor persons” with the term “indigent persons.”  The amendment was not intended to change the meaning or application of the rule.

Advisory Commission Comments [2022].

This rule adopts a word limitation provision for all briefs and other referenced papers. This rule is also amended to require a certification of compliance with the word limitation provisions of this rule.

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