Helping Trial Lawyers Navigate the Appellate System

Yesterday afternoon, I spoke at the Advanced Civil Appellate Practice Course, an annual program sponsored by TexasBarCLE and the State Bar Appellate Section. My topic was “How to Handle Cross-Appeals.”

I promised the attendees that I would make my paper and slides available over the web. Clicking the links should open each one in a new window. I hope they are helpful to anyone considering or responding to a cross-appeal in Texas state court.

I have long advocated for adoption of a Texas equivalent to Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 28.1. That rule—which establishes a uniform method for handling cross-appeals in federal appellate courts—cuts the total number of briefs from six to four, specifies type-volume limits (word counts), and sets a default briefing schedule. I urge the Texas Supreme Court to simplify Texas cross-appeal practice and adopt a similar rule.

D. Todd Smith
About the Author

D. Todd Smith is an Austin-based civil appellate specialist who works with trial teams from the earliest stages of litigation. In trial courts, he takes the lead on strategic analysis and briefing, jury charges, and potentially dispositive motions, all with a focus on preserving error and positioning cases for appellate review.

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