Judges are always kvetching that appellate briefs are too long and BO-ring or, as Judge Saxe says, “turgid and prolix.” The federal judish has decided to strike back by slashing word limits from 14,000 to 13,000.
The decree sparked howls of protest from the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers. Long don’t mean dull, as any reader of airport fiction knows. And short don’t mean good, like, when your appeal is summarily denied. If courts want snappier prose, says the AAAL, they should post “short videos” on their websites explaining “how to write a decent brief.”
Humbug. In briefwriting as in life, decency has nothing to do with winning.
Here’s how to save thousands of words – draw comics instead: