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2023 California Rules of Court

Rule 8.524. Oral argument and submission of the cause

(a) Application

This rule governs oral argument in the Supreme Court unless the court provides otherwise in its Internal Operating Practices and Procedures or by order.

(b) Place of argument

The Supreme Court holds regular sessions in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Sacramento on a schedule fixed by the court, and may hold special sessions elsewhere.

(c) Notice of argument

The Supreme Court clerk must send notice of the time and place of oral argument to all parties at least 20 days before the argument date. The Chief Justice may shorten the notice period for good cause; in that event, the clerk must immediately notify the parties by telephone or other expeditious method.

(d) Sequence of argument

The petitioner for Supreme Court relief has the right to open and close. If there are two or more petitioners-or none-the court must set the sequence of argument.

(e) Time for argument

Each side is allowed 30 minutes for argument.

(f) Number of counsel

(1)  Only one counsel on each side may argue-regardless of the number of parties on the side-unless the court orders otherwise on request.

(2)  Requests to divide oral argument among multiple counsel must be filed within 10 days after the date of the order setting the case for argument.

(3)  Multiple counsel must not divide their argument into segments of less than 10 minutes per person, except that one counsel for the opening side-or more, if authorized by the Chief Justice on request-may reserve any portion of that counsel's time for rebuttal.

(g) Argument by amicus curiae

An amicus curiae is not entitled to argument time but may ask a party for permission to use a portion or all of the party's time, subject to the 10-minute minimum prescribed in (f)(3). If permission is granted, counsel must file a request under (f)(2).

(h) Submission of the cause

(1)  A cause is submitted when the court has heard oral argument or approved its waiver and the time has expired to file all briefs and papers, including any supplemental brief permitted by the court.

(2)  The court may vacate submission only by an order stating the court's reasons and setting a timetable for resubmission.

Rule 8.524 renumbered effective January 1, 2007; repealed and adopted as rule 29.2 effective January 1, 2003.

Advisory Committee Comment

Subdivision (d). In subdivision (d), "The petitioner for Supreme Court relief" can be a petitioner for review, a petitioner for transfer (rule 8.552), a petitioner in an original proceeding in the Supreme Court, or a party designated as petitioner in a proceeding on request of a court of another jurisdiction (rule 8.548(b)(1)).

The number of petitioners is "none" when the court grants review on its own motion or transfers a cause to itself on its own motion.

Subdivision (e). The time allowed for argument in death penalty appeals is prescribed in rule 8.638.

Subdivision (f). The number of counsel allowed to argue on each side in death penalty appeals is prescribed in rule 8.638.

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