Do you want your appendix ripped out? A caveat.


So in my oral argument today, Justice Alexander made it clear that he was very unhappy with people who do not file appendices with the mandatory documents in the order listed in M.R.App.P. 8(g):  table of contents, followed by the docket entries, followed by the decision appealed from, followed by the complaint.  The rule states that "the [listed] documents shall be contained in the appendix in the following order".  Rule 8(h) goes on to list additional mandatory documents, and Rule 8(i), discretionary documents.  Neither Rule 8(h) nor Rule 8(i) includes similar language about being in any order.

I had filed an appendix with documents in chronological order, so that there were discretionary documents appearing between the docket entries and the decision appealed from.  NO.  The rule means the mandatory documents go first, in the order listed in Rule 8(g).  After the first four mandatory documents, in the order listed, then it appears you can put the remainder in the order you'd like.  But don't put anything in between the first four mandatory documents.

While I didn't attend the arguments prior to mine, from Justice Alexanders' remarks it sounded like one appellant had not filed a complete copy of the order appealed from, which he indicated was even more frustrating.  Hence, while the Rule does not explicitly say "the complete" decision, ruling or judgment appealed from, it's rational and now very clear to me that you should include it all (and I always have).  If the decision is a zillion pages and you are appealing one discrete issue, still put the whole thing in (or at least get prior dispensation if you don't want to.)

As I blogged after the appellate conference with the Law Court, the Justices said even back then that issues with appendices were on their radar screen.  Apparently things haven't gotten any better and  I am among the guilty.  

No more mistakes.