A case brief is a shortened overview of a legal case. This document is also known as a legal brief or a case summary. It is created to state a party’s legal claim in a court case concisely and understandably. Case briefs usually follow a specific format that makes them easy to understand by any law student or lawyer that reads them.
Given how important case briefs are, law students must know how to brief a case. To learn how to exhibit this legal assignment properly, keep reading this piece.
Case brief format: guide on how to write a case brief
What does a case brief look like? Technically, a case brief looks like a carefully outlined and analyzed court case. However, although case briefs relay the same types of information, you should note that each case is different. Thus, each will employ different versions of the case brief outline.
However, a brief addresses some relevant elements, and if you want to write one or learn how to write one, you can utilize the format below for case writing:
1. Select the appropriate case brief format
You can select from a variety of similar formats for your assignment report. Most of them include the same basic information but may use somewhat different nomenclature. However, the most successful approach is utilizing the most beneficial or applicable style to your particular case.
2. Begin with the title, author, and citation
The title of the case, reference, and author should appear at the top of a case brief. The case’s title should identify the conflicting sides of the case. The petitioner/plaintiff is listed first, followed by the defendant. In addition, the citation includes the case reporter’s contact information. A case report is a journal that lists legal cases in a specific jurisdiction. Thus, allowing readers to search up case facts if needed.
3. Give a summary of the case’s facts
A fact is legally crucial if it has influenced the case’s conclusion. Ensure that you state the legal facts that pertain to the case. However, it should be stated as:
- Reason for the action – this should be a single statement that explains why the lawsuit was brought. It could be a contract breach, eviction, debt, or other disputes between persons or businesses.
- Relevant law statement – this covers what laws were violated.
- Description of opposing parties – this should include the names of the plaintiff and defendant and their connection.
- Complaint – you should describe the critical aspects of the complaint and the reason for filing the lawsuit.
- Court holdings – where applicable, write the synopsis of the procedural history or actions taken in a lower court.
4. State the legal issue
Your argument is a legal issue. It should incorporate the facts as well as the court’s inquiries. The legal issue should be articulated as a legal question that can be given a simple yes/no answer. If the issue includes constitutional rights, you’ll need to include a list of all pertinent points of interest from the constitution.
5. Explain the concept of the rule of law
The legal principle(s) on which the court’s judgment was established should be stated in the rule of law. This is an important aspect of figuring out Your goal in this part is to identify the relevant rule of law and explain it clearly and concisely.
The rule of law should respond to the question given in the legal issue section. This section can also include a policy statement or the rationale for the laws listed.
6. Explain the reasoning and holding
The legal reasons for a court judgment are described in the section. This part ensures that all-important legal rules and reasonings are appropriately described and related to the case’s relevant circumstances.
7. Dissents and concurrences
This is written only if a judge hearing a case disagrees with the majority ruling. The concurrences and dissents should be summarized and addressed in the brief. However, they’re generally brief, so make your summary shorter and explain the reasons why the judges disagreed with the majority ruling.
How long should a case brief be?
As the name implies, a case brief should be brief. This implies that your case brief should be concise while conveniently relaying the details of the case. Although cases may differ in detail and length, there’s a general approach to the case briefs length.
Case briefs are usually under 600 words before concurrences and dissents follow the general practice.
If you’ve ever wondered “what does a case brief look like?” Then you must have found this piece helpful. Knowing how to write a case brief could be a tedious assignment. But completing a case study paper is easier when the job is planned and clear. It isn’t so hard figuring out how to write a legal brief. But, regardless of whether you love the process or not, you should take it seriously. Also, ensure that you have completed all necessary edits and proofreading before submitting the final document.