A. APPLICABILITY OF RULES

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Rule 1: Scope and Construction of Rules.

These rules shall govern procedure in proceedings before the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, and Court of Criminal Appeals. These rules shall be construed to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every proceeding on its merits.

Advisory Commission Comments.

These rules are drawn under the authority of Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 16-3-402 – 16-3-407, and 16-3-601. Those provisions of the Tennessee Code empower the Supreme Court to make rules of practice and procedure in all courts of this state and in all civil and criminal suits, actions and proceedings. Accordingly, these rules govern procedure before all the appellate courts in Tennessee and in all proceedings, whether denominated as appeals or otherwise, in both civil and criminal cases. By the terms of the statute, after the rules have taken effect, all laws in conflict therewith are of no further force and effect.

A principal purpose of these rules is to bring together in one place a simplified, coherent, and modern body of law. Under Rule 45 of these rules and Tenn. Code Ann. § 16-3-407, the intermediate appellate courts are expressly authorized to make and amend rules governing their practice not inconsistent with these rules.

These rules are not identical to the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure either in their substance or organization. Instead, they reflect a study of existing Tennessee law as well as the rules and statutes of virtually every other state.

As is the case with the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure, it is the policy of these rules to disregard technicality in form in order that a just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every appellate proceeding on its merits may be obtained.

Unlike the rules of many other jurisdictions, these rules do not contain a provision specifying that they shall not be construed to extend or limit the jurisdiction of the appellate courts. Nothing in these rules is intended to affect substantive rights, and all the rules must be construed consistently with the constitutions of the United States and the state of Tennessee.

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