New York State Appellate Division, First Department – Are Photographs Permitted to Be Included in a Brief?

I was recently asked by a client whether the Appellate Division, First Department would permit him to include a photograph within the text of his brief.  Specifically, he wanted to “paint a picture” of a scene which was completely relevant and utterly explanatory rather than just describe the scene as it occurred.  Intuitively, why not?  If a picture is, in fact, worth 1,000 words, it might do well to reduce the length of his brief so that it would fall well within the parameters and guidelines set forth by the Appellate Division, First Department.  Moreover, it might make the Court’s job easier in deciphering the details elicited by Counsel.

That said, take heed.  The Appellate Division, First Department will not, in fact, accept such a filing.  One may certainly reference a photograph that is included in the Record on Appeal/Appendix, which he or she files with the brief.  However, including it as an embedded image within the brief will result in the brief being categorically rejected by the Court.  If one does not wish to picture an angry client blasting his attorney as to why his brief was rejected, keep photos out of your briefs.