Submissions, books of appeal and authorities in civil appeals


1. Written submissions in appeals other than those set out in par.2 below, shall not, save with the leave of the Court, exceed 10,000 words in total. All footnotes are to be included for the purposes of the word count. It is expected that, save in complex appeals, the submissions will be significantly shorter than the permitted 10,000 words.

2. Written submissions in the following classes of appeals shall not, save with the leave of the Court, exceed 5,000 words. All footnotes are to be included for the purposes of the word count.

(i) an appeal against the grant or refusal of relief under Article 40.4.2° of the Constitution;

(ii) an appeal against the making or refusal of any interlocutory order;

(iii) an appeal against the making or refusal of any order granting summary judgment;

(iv) an appeal against the making or refusal of:

(a) a winding up order;

(b) an order appointing a provisional liquidator;

(c) an order appointing a receiver;

(d) an order in the course of examinership proceedings;

(v) an appeal against the making or refusal of:

(a) an adjudication in bankruptcy;

(b) an order under Chapter 3 (Debt Settlement Arrangements) or Chapter 4 (Personal Insolvency Arrangements) of Part 3 of the Personal Insolvency Act 2012;

(vi) an appeal against the making or refusal of any order in any proceedings to which Order 133 (Child Abduction and Enforcement of Custody Orders) applies;

(vii) an appeal against the making or refusal of any order making a determination as to the capacity of a person (including an order making or refusing to make a person a ward of court);

(viii) an appeal against the making or refusal of an order in proceedings under the European Arrest Warrant Acts 2003 and 2012 or in extradition proceedings;

(ix) an appeal from the making or refusal of an order of prohibition in criminal proceedings;

(x) an appeal against the refusal of an ex parte order;

(xi) an appeal against the making or refusal of an order to dismiss proceedings

3. Submissions should follow the following template:

(i) Introduction (which should not exceed two pages) setting out the facts giving rise to the proceedings and the uncontested findings of the trial judge;

(ii) The judgment appealed from;

(iii) The issues to be decided on the appeal and any cross-appeal;

(iv) Submissions relevant to the issues at (iii) above. These should identify the relevant legal principles and should focus on the issues. Generalised submissions are not permitted. Where evidence is referred to the precise location in the transcript or an affidavit must be identified (by footnote preferably);

(v) Conclusion which should include an indication of the orders sought;

(vi) Chronology of relevant dates as an Appendix to the appellant’s submissions in any fact-dependant appeal. If a respondent disputes the appellant’s chronology, an amended chronology must be included as an Appendix to the respondent’s submissions identifying clearly the points of difference. The chronology need not be included for the purposes of the submission word count.

4. Where a party seeks to set aside any finding of fact made by the High Court, the submissions must identify, having regard to the principles enunciated in Hay v. O’Grady [1992] 1 I.R. 210 and subsequent judgments, the basis upon which they maintain they are entitled so to do.

5. The submissions should be presented in the following format:

(i) All submissions should carry the title and Record Number of the case and should clearly indicate on whose behalf they are presented. They should specify the word count, and where settled by Counsel or Solicitor, the name of such Counsel or Solicitor should appear at the foot thereof;

(ii) A4-size page printed on one or both sides;

(iii) Font size 12, Times New Roman or similar;

(iv) 1.5 line spaces;

(v) Margins of 3.25 cm at each side and 2.5 cm at top and bottom.

6. All submissions should be filed in both hard and soft copy. The hard and soft copy submissions must be identical. The soft copy submissions should be in Word format and emailed to within 3 days of the filing of the hard copy submissions. A copy of the submissions must be served on the other parties to the appeal.


7. Subject to any order made at a Directions hearing, the appellant shall, not later than 4 weeks before the date fixed for the hearing of the appeal, lodge in the Court of Appeal Office four copies of the appeal books prepared as set out below. One copy of the appeal books shall be served at the same time on each respondent to the appeal. The appellant shall seek to agree the index to each appeal book by sending same to the respondent(s) no later than 8 weeks prior to the hearing date who must respond with any proposed amendments within 2 weeks.

8. All appeal books must be clearly indexed and paginated. All documents in the appeal books must be legible and complete. Care should be taken that Lever Arch files are not over-filled.  Books should be identified on the cover and (where possible) on the spine as to the content and, if appropriate, the number of the book.

9. The appeal books shall comprise:

A. Core Book comprising:

(i) High Court order appealed from;

(ii) High Court written judgment, or, if an ex tempore judgment, a certified transcript or agreed note (signed by or on behalf of each party by Counsel or Solicitor) approved by the High Court judge;

(iii)  Notice of Appeal;

(iv)  Respondent’s Notice(s);

(v) Submissions of the appellant on the appeal;

(vi)  Submissions of the respondent on the appeal.

B. Book of Pleadings:

(i) Where the appeal is in proceedings commenced by plenary summons, copies of the summons, any statement of claim, defence and any reply in chronological sequence:  requests and replies to particulars or other notices or documents exchanged should only be included where relevant to the issues on appeal;

(ii) Where the appeal is in any other proceedings, copies of the originating document and any other document in the nature of a defence or statement of opposition;

(iii) Where the appeal is from an interlocutory order, in addition a copy of the notice of motion;

(iv) Any order, other than the order appealed from, or direction of the High Court relevant to the appeal.

C. Book(s) of Evidence in the High Court:

(i) Where the evidence in the High Court was on affidavit, copies of each affidavit (including only exhibits relevant to the appeal) relied on or opened in the High Court set out in chronological sequence.  Where these extend beyond one Lever Arch file, only affidavits should be included in the first Level Arch file with relevant exhibits in subsequent ones;

(ii) Where oral evidence was given over 4 days or less, the complete transcript of the evidence given at trial certified as accurate by the transcript writer or provider;

(iii) Where oral evidence was given over more than 4 days, an agreed book of extracts of the transcript of the evidence relevant to the issues in the appeal. The Index to the transcripts must, in respect of each witness, identify the witness, the party on whose behalf the evidence was given, whether given in direct examination or cross-examination.  The extracts must be sufficient to enable the Court understand the context in which the evidence was given;

(iv) Book(s) of any documents admitted in evidence in the High Court relied on by either party as relevant to the appeal.  Where the documents exceed 20, there should be one agreed Core Book of documents most relevant to the issues on appeal;

(v) Where only extracts from the transcript (under (iii) above) are included, the appellant shall lodge with the appeal books a single copy of the entire transcript of the evidence given in the Court below. The transcript shall be lodged electronically where directed by the Registrar.



(a) It is the responsibility of the parties to the appeal to agree a book of authorities. No later than 8 weeks prior to the hearing date, the appellant should deliver to the respondent and any other parties to the appeal a draft list of the authorities to be included in the books of authorities having regard to paragraphs(c) and (d) below. No later than 4 weeks prior to the hearing date, the respondent and any other party shall deliver to the appellant a list of any additional authorities to be included in the agreed books of authorities.

(b) Unless otherwise directed by the Court, the appellant shall hand into Court at the commencement of the hearing of the appeal three copies of the agreed indexed book(s) of authorities.

(c) Where a case has been reported in the official reports, such report is the only report of the case which should be included in the book of authorities. No unreported judgment or computer-generated copy should be included where a reported judgement is available.

(d) Practitioners are reminded that it is only necessary to include in the books of authorities those judgments relied on in the substance of the written submissions, and/or which may be referred to in oral argument which the Court will require to read in full. It is not necessary that all authorities, extracts from which are merely referred to in written submissions (and in particular those which establish well-known principles with which the Court will be familiar), should be included in books of authorities.

First issued 20th December 2016 pursuant to the provisions of Section 7C (2) of the Courts (Supplemental Provisions) Act 1961 as inserted by Section 10 of the Court of Appeal Act 2014.

George Birmingham
Court of Appeal
31st day of January 2019

Court of Appeal