home

SUMMARY OF FILING REQUIREMENTS FOR BRIEFS AND OTHER DOCUMENTS IN NON-CAPITAL CRIMINAL AND JUVENILE CASES IN CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEAL AND SUPREME COURT

(rev. September 2017)

 

PRELIMINARY NOTES

Applicability of charts

These charts apply in the "typical" situation of an appellant who is a defendant (criminal and delinquency) or parent (dependency). For special situations, such as a government appeal or cross-appeals, dependency minor's appeal, multiple dependency respondents, filings by amici curiae, etc., consult the California Rules of Court and the ADI California Appellate Practice Manual.

One set of charts reflects the mandatory use of TrueFiling in all Court of Appeal districts (as of October 30, 2017, when it becomes mandatory in the Second) and for petitions for review and related filings in the California Supreme Court. Another set covers rules for paper filings; these charts cover the filing of the required unbound paper copy submitted with a petition for review or a brief or writ petition in the Sixth District. It covers briefing and related documents in review-granted cases and original proceedings in the Supreme Court. They also apply to paper filings by self-represented litigants and other situations requiring or permitting paper filings.

Sources of filing requirements

Court rules are a major source of requirements for filing. All rule references in the charts are to the California Rules of Court unless otherwise specified. The stand-alone Supreme Court Rules Regarding Electronic Filingare designated as SCRREF.

Each appellate district has online requirements, as well. (Rule 8.72.) Go to the court website, click the Courts button in the upper lefthand corner, and choose either Supreme Court or Courts of Appeal on the dropdown menu. If the latter, select the applicable district from the list at the left. Once the applicable court is selected, click Electronic Filing (or Electronic Filing/Submission) from the menu of topics at the left. If the topic is not covered by the online material, contact the court clerk’s office.

CAVEAT: Electronic filing rules are just now being developed. The California Rules of Court touch on only part of the issues. The Supreme Court has stand-alone rules, which presently cover only petitions for review and related filings, as well as capital proceedings. Each district has its own rules, and some are not easy to find. Some are labeled “guidelines” when they are in fact requirements. They additionally are often amended, or supplemental rules are published. In time, perhaps, this rather chaotic situation will be resolved by statewide rules. Meanwhile, call the court clerk’s office whenever in doubt.

Calculation of due dates

If the date for doing an act falls on a day the court is closed, it is timely if done on next business day. (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 10, 12a, 12b, 135; rule 1.10.) Under Code of Civil Procedure section 12, on computation of time: “The time in which any act provided by law is to be done is computed by excluding the first day, and including the last, unless the last day is a holiday, and then it is also excluded."

Filing and service

Electronic or paper documents are "filed" when received by court clerk's office. (See Cal. Rules of Court, rule 8.25(b)(1).) BUT:

  • paper documents listed in rule 8.25(b)(3) are considered timely if mailed by priority or express mail or delivered to overnight carrier on or before due date;
  • paper documents delivered by an inmate to custodial officials for mailing by due date are deemed timely under rule 8.25(b)(5).

ADI’s CHEAT SHEET provides information about service options in the Fourth Appellate District.

Sealed and confidential records

Filings referring to sealed and confidential records must comply with rules 8.45-8.47.

Examples of changes from former practices would be the requirement of bookmarking sections of documents filed, text searchable PDF, and consecutive pagination starting with the cover.

Fourth Appellate District guidance to electronic filings

In addition to California Rules of Court, rule 8.70 et seq., the Fourth District has set out district-specific guidance for electronic filers. It includes these topics:

Electronic Formatting Requirements of the Fourth District Pursuant to California Rules of Court, Rule 8.72(a) and 8.74(b), effective September 1, 2017

http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/4DCA-eFiling-additional-eFiling-guidelines.pdf

HOW TO PREPARE ELECTRONIC FILINGS

  • Electronic Bookmarking Tips
    • Tips on Adobe PDF Bookmark Settings
    • PDF Bookmark Zoom Settings
    • How to bookmark (video)
  • Briefs
    • Formatting Guidelines for Briefs
    • Sample Brief
  • Appendix (civil cases only)
    • Formatting Guidelines for Appendices
    • Sample Appendix
  • Writ Petitions and Exhibits
    • Formatting Guidelines for Petitions
    • Formatting Guidelines for Exhibits
    • Sample Writ Petition
    • Sample Exhibit
  • Motion/Request/Application with Exhibits
    • Additional Electronic Filing Guidelines for Submitting Documents to Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District
    • Sample Exhibit

CHARTS OF FILING AND SERVICE RULES


OPENING, RESPONDENT, AND REPLY BRIEFS, AND PETITIONS FOR REHEARING IN THE COURT OF APPEAL

Contents of Chart

  • Due dates
  • Format
  • Cover
  • Contents
  • Length
  • Service and filing

Rules

TrueFiling required for attorneys in every district but Second as of September 2017 (the Second starts October 30, 2017), unless a special exception applies (such as self-representation or a court-ordered exemption under rule 8.71(b) or (d)).

Paper documents

TrueFiling documents


PETITIONS FOR REVIEW, ANSWERS, AND REPLIES

Contents of Chart

Due dates
Format
Cover
Contents of petition other than exhaustion petition
Contents of exhaustion petition
Contents of answer
Attachments to petition
Length
Incorporation by reference
Service and filing

Rules

Paper documents

TrueFiling documents


NON-CAPITAL BRIEFS ON THE MERITS AND PETITIONS FOR REHEARING IN CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT

At this time, the Supreme Court Rules Regarding Electronic Filings do not permit electronic filing of briefs on the merits and related documents in non-capital cases. The California Rules of Court for paper filings apply.

Contents of chart, paper filings

Due dates
Format
Cover
Contents
Length
Attachments
Service and filing


NON-CAPITAL HABEAS CORPUS PROCEEDINGS IN APPELLATE COURT

TrueFiling is mandatory for writ petitions filed by an attorney in every Court of Appeal but the Second as of September 2017 (the Second starts on October 30, 2017), unless a special exception (such as self-representation or a court-ordered exemption under rule 8.71(b) or (d)) applies. Original writ proceedings in the California Supreme Court are not yet open to TrueFiling as of September 2017. Check the courts’ web pages, clerks’ offices, and projects for local variations.

Contents of charts

Due dates
Format
Cover
Contents and accompanying documents
Length
Service and filing

Rules

Paper documents

TrueFiling documents


APPLICATIONS, MOTIONS, AND MISC. DOCUMENTS

TrueFiling is mandatory for motions and similar documents filed by an attorney in every Court of Appeal but the Second as of September 2017 (the Second starts on October 30, 2017), unless a special exception (such as self-representation or a court-ordered exemption under rule 8.71(b) or (d)) applies. Such documents in the California Supreme Court are subject to TrueFiling if related to a petition for review, but not those related to review-granted cases or writs.

Contents of charts

Applications
Extensions of time
Other applications

Motions and oppositions to motions
Augmentations
Other motions

Miscellaneous documents
Abandonments
Record correction letter
Informal letter to superior court to correct credits
Motion in superior court to correct credits

Rules

Paper documents

TrueFiling documents


Back to Top

 

 

 

*The material found on this Web site is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered to be legal advice and is not guaranteed to be complete or up to date. Use of this Web site is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship between the user and Appellate Defenders, Inc. (ADI) or any of the firm's attorneys. Readers should not rely upon or act upon this information without seeking professional counsel. See full disclaimer.