Professor Leora Harpaz

The Supreme Court

Fall, 2006


Required Reading:

(1) James vanR. Springer, Some Suggestions on Preparing Briefs on the Merits in the Supreme Court of the United States, 33 Cath. U.L. Rev. 593 (1984);

(2) Andrew L. Frey and Roy T. Englert, Jr., How to Write a Good Appellate Brief, available at;

(3) Guide to Appellate Briefs (reviews each section of an appellate brief using as an example the briefs filed by Petitioner in Respondent in the Supreme Court case of Texas v. Johnson) available at

Optional Reading:

(4) Ellie Margolis, Beyond Brandeis: Exploring the Uses of Non-Legal Materials in Appellate Briefs, 34 U.S.F.L. Rev. 197 (2000);

(5) Clyde H. Hamilton, Appellate Advocacy: Effective Appellate Brief Writing, 50 S.C. L. Rev. 581 (1999);

(6) Lucy V. Katz & Neil L. Felshman, Lawyers’ Language - Some Suggestions for Incorporating Techniques of Advocacy into the Appellate Brief, 9 J. of Contemporary L. 127 (1983). This is a lengthy document and it will take several minutes to load.

Sample Student Brief Assignment:

(1) Respondent’s Brief in American Coalition of Life Activists v. Planned Parenthood.

(2) Petitioner's Brief in Ashcroft v. Raich