Policies for Utah Court Briefs

Policies for Utah Court Briefs

Collection Purpose

This Utah Court Briefs collection contains public record briefs submitted to the Utah Supreme Court and Utah Court of Appeals and supplied to the University of Utah and BYU Law Libraries by the Courts for the purposes of legal scholarship and academic research. The Law Libraries offer this collection as a public service encouraged by the Utah Courts. For additional information, please contact the Repository Administrator at hunterlawlibrary@byu.edu.

Researchers unfamiliar with legal procedure may learn more via the US Courts, Utah Courts, and other internet resources. These sites provide additional information:

Judicial opinions (case decisions) based on briefs in this Digital Commons collection may often be found at the Utah Courts website or by using the Google Scholar case law search. Basic legal research information is available through the BYU Law Library's libguides, as well as the BYU and UofU Law Libraries' onsite print and electronic resources (click the links for details about library programs, resources, reference hours, and directions). Reference assistance is available for visitors to both libraries.

Editorial Policy

The Utah Code of Judicial Administration Rule 4-202.02(2)(C) designates all appellate filings, including briefs, as public records; unless otherwise classified as sealed or private by operation of an exclusionary rule or judicial decision. The Utah Rules also place the burden of redacting private or protected information on the party filing a document with the courts (4-202.09(9)(A)).

The participating Law Libraries are not responsible for the selection or content of individual records. The court briefs included in this collection were reviewed by court staff prior to their delivery to the libraries, and the libraries rely upon the editorial judgement of the courts to determine the public status of legal briefs. Please note that changes in the classification criteria are not applied retrospectively. These briefs have also been scanned using automated search and pattern recognition protocols to identify protected information, but no warranties are provided. Documents included in this collection are not reviewed individually by library staff and no further editorial discretion is exercised.

If it is suspected that a document has been provided in error by the court staff to the libraries, interested parties should follow the Document Removal procedures identified below.

The repository will retain or remove documents as directed by judges or court administrators.

Research Requests

Some records in this collection contain only descriptive metadata. Legal practitioners, scholars and other researchers may request PDF copies of the briefs from this category of record by contacting the Repository Administrator at hunterlawlibrary@byu.edu. Requests must contain specific record information, such as the case name and docket number, or URL.

If access to a Utah court record not included in this collection is desired, researchers should contact the State Law Library for assistance.

Document Removal

The Repository Administrator will remove the full-text PDF of a brief from general public view when presented with documentation showing that the brief has been sealed or reclassified as private by a court. (A note on that procedure is at the bottom of this page.) Send the documentation to the Repository Administrator, preferably via email (hunterlawlibrary@byu.edu).

Occasionally, non-public court records have been sent to the BYU and UofU Law Libraries by mistake. Court documents containing personally identifiable information about minors are considered non-public records. If a record containing such information has been inadvertently included in the archive, that record should be brought to the attention of the Repository Administrator via email (hunterlawlibrary@byu.edu) so that it can be removed from the system.

Briefs are generally withdrawn from the repository within five working days after receipt of documentation confirming reclassification. However, the speed with which the various search engines (Google, Yahoo!, Bing, etc.) update their data is not under the control of the repository. In addition, search engine references may never entirely disappear, even after the PDF is no longer available for download. Please note that because this repository serves as a catalog of briefs given to the libraries by the Utah courts, a citation for the document (the metadata) may still remain in the repository after removal of the PDF. Metadata records will be removed when that action is advised by the State Law Librarian or Clerk of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeals.

Further information about the legal policies and procedures regarding Utah court briefs may be requested from the clerk of the appropriate court.

Court contact information:

Lisa Collins
Clerk of Court
Utah Court of Appeals
courtofappeals@utcourts.gov
Andrea Martinez
Clerk of Court
Utah Supreme Court
supremecourt@utcourts.gov

 

Visit the Utah State Law Library website.

 

NOTE ON PROCEDURE: Individuals desiring to have a court document sealed, or reclassified as private, must file a motion for reclassification consistent with the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure. Trial records must be reviewed by the trial court that heard the initial case, appellate records (including briefs) must be reviewed by the Court of Appeals, and supreme court records by the Utah Supreme Court. Filing a motion with a court is a procedure usually performed by an attorney.