How to write a Case Brief
1. Select a useful case brief format.
There are many different ways to brief a case. You should use the format that is most
useful for your class and exam preparations. Regardless of form, every brief should
include the following information in steps 2-9.
2. Use the right caption when naming the brief.
A brief should begin with the case name, the court that decided it, the year it was
decided, and the page on which it appears in the casebook.
3. Identify the case facts.
Next, state the facts of the case. This section is necessary because legal principles are
defined by the situations in which they arise. Include in your brief only those facts that
are legally relevant. A fact is legally relevant if it had an impact on the case's outcome.
For example, in a personal injury action arising from a car accident, the color of the
parties' cars seldom would be relevant to the case's outcome. Similarly, if the plaintiff
and defendant presented different versions of the