(a) Application; When Filed; Grounds. Within twenty days after the date of the rescript of the Appeals Court any party to the appeal may file an application for leave to obtain further appellate review of the case by the full Supreme Judicial Court. Such application shall be founded upon substantial reasons affecting the public interest or the interests of justice. Oral argument in support of an application shall not be permitted except by order of the court.

(b) Contents of Application; Form. The application for leave to obtain further appellate review shall contain, in the following order: (1) a request for leave to obtain further appellate review; (2) a statement of prior proceedings in the case (including whether any party is seeking a rehearing in the Appeals Court); (3) a short statement of facts relevant to the appeal (but facts correctly stated in the opinion, if any, of the Appeals Court shall not be restated); (4) a statement of the points with respect to which further appellate review of the decision of the appeals court is sought; and (5) a brief statement (covering not more than ten pages of typing), including appropriate authorities, indicating why further appellate review is appropriate. A copy of the rescript and opinion, if any, of the Appeals Court shall be appended to the application. In addition, if the Appeals Court entered a memorandum and order under Appeals Court Rule 1:28 which refers to another document, such as a brief or judge's findings and rulings, a copy of that document, or, if appropriate, the pertinent pages of that document, shall be appended to the application. The application shall comply with the requirements of Rule 20.

(c) Opposition; Form. Within ten days after the filing of the application, any other party to the appeal may, but need not, file and serve an opposition thereto (covering not more than ten pages of typing) setting forth reasons why the application should not be granted. The opposition shall not restate matters described in subdivision (b)(2) and (3) of this rule unless the opposing party is dissatisfied with the statement thereof contained in the application. An application shall comply with the requirements of Rule 20.

(d) Filing; Service. One copy of the application and one copy of each opposition shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the Appeals Court. An original and seventeen copies of the application and of each opposition shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the full Supreme Judicial Court. Filing and service of the application and of any opposition shall comply with Rule 13.

(e) Vote for Further Appellate Review; Certification. If any three justices of the Supreme Judicial Court shall vote for further appellate review for substantial reasons affecting the public interest or the interests of justice, or if a majority of the justices of the Appeals Court or a majority of the justices of the Appeals Court deciding the case shall certify that the public interest or the interests of justice make desirable a further appellate review, an order allowing the application or the certificate, as the case may be, shall be transmitted to the clerk of the Appeals Court; upon receipt, further appellate review shall be deemed granted. The clerk shall forthwith transmit to the clerk of the full Supreme Judicial Court all papers theretofore filed in the case and shall notify the clerk of the lower court that leave to obtain further appellate review has been granted.

(f) Briefs. Any party may apply to the Supreme Judicial Court within ten days after the date on which the appeal is docketed in the full Supreme Judicial Court for permission to file a new brief. If the application is granted, the new brief must be filed in accordance with the briefing schedule established by the Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court, and the court may impose terms as to the length and filing of such brief and any response thereto. If a new brief is filed, it will be considered in lieu of the Appeals Court brief. If permission to file a new brief is denied or not sought, cases in which further appellate review has been granted shall be argued on the briefs filed in the Appeals Court.

(g) Order of Argument. The applicant for leave to obtain further appellate review will argue first unless the court directs or the parties agree otherwise.

Amended effective February 24, 1975; July 1, 1991; January 1, 1994; November 1, 1994; February 1, 1995; April 14, 1995; amended October 30, 1997, effective January 1, 1998, Amended, effective June 1, 2001; amended February 26, 2004, effective April 1, 2004.