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Thumbnail Brief

A Quick Guide to Writing
A Thumbnail Brief

In a nutshell, a thumbnail brief is a brief, of a brief! It is a shorthand version of a comprehensive brief that leaves out some components such at the parties, objectives, theories, and history and litigation. It abbreviates the facts, issue(s), holding and reasoning. You must know how to do a comprehensive brief before you attempt to do a thumbnail brief. Many people fall into the trap of only doing thumbnail briefs. Thumbnail briefs are not substituted for comprehensive briefs, so make sure you have a clear understanding of how to write a comprehensive brief before attempting to write a thumbnail brief.

Outline of a Thumbnail Brief

  1. Citation
  2. Key Facts
  3. Issue 1
  4. Holding 1
  5. Reasoning 1
  6. Issue 2 (If there is more than one issue present)
  7. Holding 2
  8. Reasoning 2
  9. Disposition

For a more detailed explanation of how a case brief is written, click here to Learn More...

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