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Thursday, May 10, 2007

The 125-page brief

Apparently the lawyers for Long Branch defending the use of eminent domain in the city believe that longer is better. They filed a 125-page brief in their court fight to roust 19 property owners to allow for redevelopment. Yes, whatever points they were advocating took 125 pages to explain. The normal maximum is 65 pages and courts can give some leeway for an "overlength brief.'' But almost twice as long? Fortunately, an appellate court Monday ruled that the city went overboard and rejected it.

It's bad enough that the brief is undoubtedly chock-full of legalese. Judges are used to that. But the city's lawyers shouldn't try to intimidate everyone involved by going on and on with extensive arguments. After all, it is a brief, usually defined as a concise statement of the main points in a case. "Concise'' may vary from reader to reader, but 125 pages? This ongoing eminent domain fight may seem like "War and Peace,'' but it doesn't have to read that way.


Anonymous tom said...

Perhaps they feel that the volume of paper justifies larger fees.

5:47 AM, May 11, 2007  

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