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What is a Case Brief?
Put simply, case briefs are a detailed analysis of a legal case chosen by you or assigned to you by a tutor. If you do not already know how to write a case brief Canada, your task is to set out the case’s facts, the different arguments put forward by the participating parties, the judgment of the court, and to explain the importance of the particular case. Case briefs are challenging because their structure is quite specific and they involve detailed research. You also need to give your own well-reasoned thoughts and opinions on the legal case you are scrutinizing.
What is Included in a Case Brief?
While it is possible to get a case brief template online to help you understand the contents, these papers generally have certain headings you need to address:
- The laws that govern the case or are presented in it;
- Description of the case’s events;
- The main issues that run through the legal case;
- Holding and reasoning;
- Concurrence of and laws pertaining to events;
- Instances of dissent;
- Legal opinion(s) and your opinion.
As you will see from any good case brief example in Canada, the different sections mentioned above require important and relevant information. So that your assignment is worthy of a good grade, our legal writers will make sure that all irrelevant and unnecessary details that may ruin the very essence of your analysis are omitted. Their arguments will be clear, brief and supported with sound data and appropriate evidence. Remember, as official papers, the tone should be formal. It is the belief of our writers that the language in case briefs, as a minimum requirement, should be sharp, accurate and concise. Writing services that specialize in assisting with case briefs are crucial for almost every student because the writers are experts in law and help students acquire specialist knowledge in this field by providing high-quality sample case brief papers.
It is necessary to follow a certain structure and style of presentation when writing formal papers, including case briefs. So, again, what is a case brief? You should begin by reading as much material as you possibly can about the particular case. Find anything and everything about it. Try not to miss any important details. You need not get overly familiar with the available information. Just enough to help you undertake a critical analysis of the key points of the case as well as the most important data and events relating to it. Although this part is certainly time-consuming, it will provide the information you need to gain command of the case. Additionally, possessing all available information and facts before you start writing will make everything faster and easier when you do actually begin.
Correct Structure of a Case Brief
Your summary is in place. The case has been reviewed and now it is time to structure the paper. There are eight main components to include in a case brief:
- Title of case and citations: A title provides readers with the names of the parties in the case; often it sets legal proceedings in motion (for example, an appeal, plaintiff, and so on). Citations help readers to find full details of a judgment.
- Relevant and significant facts: Summarizing facts is considered difficult – possibly the most challenging aspect – of this type of paper. Any facts to be excluded from a brief need to be precisely determined. All unnecessary additional information such as names, certain times and dates, models of cars, and so on should be excluded. You also need to determine that facts are relevant and remove unnecessary ones.
- Identifying Issues: Issues that need to be set aside for further attention and discussion should be identified. Answers to these questions should not exceed a sentence.
- List any contentions: Every contention put forward by the participating parties should be listed as a way of proving the legal case. Collect together corresponding contentions put forward by the opposite party.
- Decisions/holdings: You should write these down in order of issues and principles, each in its own paragraph. Remember to include court explanations and details about the case facts and the application of legal principles. The case outcome appears in the final sentence.
- Concurring or dissenting opinion: Where the majority of opinion differs from the judge’s opinion, the case brief should also record this. Information of this nature needs to be accurate and crisp.
- Points of law: All the legal points and principles brought forward in this case judgment should be listed. These points and principles should be framed as statements of declaration – rather than fact-specific.
- The concluding part: The case’s significance, how it relates to cases like it, and new points that have arisen from it should be analyzed. Discuss how the case reflects current law, and any issues or approaches that emerged. Has the decision of the court been appropriate and does it confirm or change current law? How consistent and logical has the case been? Was anything new omitted or included?
Find more useful information in article “Case Brief Template“
Additional Tips on How to Write a Case Brief
People are not endowed with a natural flair for writing case briefs at birth. The very brightest of legal scholars even need to learn this art. Below are a few additional tips on writing a good case brief:
- Collect all relevant facts regarding the legal case and develop a rough outline. It will be easier to assemble your case brief when the facts are in front of you. Catalog every case file item in order to be able to quickly find key information later.
- Record in detail everything that has occurred so far in the case. Include in this all verdicts and any appeals, as well as other details that give a complete picture of it.
- Create a list with questions about the main issues. Usually, these questions are best structured with “no” or “yes” answers.
- Discuss any legal rules and principles upon which the case is based.
- Explain in careful detail the legal arguments and/or rationale underlying the decision of the court. Do this in narrative style, including all of the case’s parts as well as the legal reasoning. This aspect of writing a case brief is the one that possibly takes the most time, but also is the most critical aspect.
- Even though you may be tempted to refer to the judges’ dissenting or concurring opinions, you should not overly-focus on this part because this is usually a mere footnote. Where courts draw on other cases to reach decisions, they rarely note any other opinion except the majority opinion.
- What was your reason for choosing this specific case? Explain the importance of your chosen case during your class presentation. Was the decision, for example, a landmark one? Is the core legal issue linked to any controversial questions that are still unresolved?
- Carefully consider any possible questions that your case might give rise to so that your fellow students can think about these and give their insight if or when your case comes before them for discussion.
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