Rules of Appellate Procedure

(Applicable to Civil Cases)

Rules of Appellate Procedure Appellate Procedure Rule 26: Costs

Effective Date: 07/01/1979
Updates: Amended May 15, 1979, effective July 1, 1979


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(a) To whom allowed

Except as otherwise provided by law, if an appeal is dismissed, costs shall be taxed against the appellant unless otherwise agreed by the parties or ordered by the appellate court; if a judgment is affirmed, costs shall be taxed against the appellant unless otherwise ordered; if a judgment is reversed, costs shall be taxed against the appellee unless otherwise ordered; if a judgment is affirmed or reversed in part, or is vacated, costs shall be allowed only as ordered by the appellate court.

(b) Costs for and against the Commonwealth

In cases involving the Commonwealth or an agency or officer thereof, if an award of costs against the Commonwealth is authorized by law, costs shall be awarded in accordance with the provisions of subdivision (a); otherwise, costs shall not be awarded for or against the Commonwealth.

(c) Costs of briefs, appendices, and copies of records

The cost of printing or otherwise producing necessary copies of briefs, appendices, or copies of records authorized by Rule 18(f) shall be taxable in the lower court at rates not higher than those generally charged for such work in the Commonwealth. A party who desires such costs to be taxed shall state them in an itemized and verified bill of costs which he shall file with the clerk of the lower court, with proof of service, within fourteen days after the entry of judgment.

(d) Clerk to insert costs in lower court judgment; costs taxable

The clerk of the lower court shall prepare and certify an itemized statement of costs for insertion in the lower court judgment. The statement shall include those costs taxable under subdivision (c) of this rule; costs incurred in the preparation and transmission of the record, the cost of the reporter's transcript, if necessary for the determination of the appeal, the premiums paid for cost of any bond to preserve rights pending appeal, and the fee for filing the notice of appeal shall be taxed in the lower court as costs of the appeal in favor of the party entitled to costs under this rule.

Reporter's notes

(1979) Rule 26 is limited to civil cases.

(1973) Appellate Rule 26, based on F.R.A.P. 39, governs the allowance of costs, and follows prior practice. See G.L. c. 261, § 22. Costs are taxable against the Commonwealth as against an individual. G.L. c. 261, §§ 14, 16. Appellate Rule 26(c), dealing with costs of briefs, enlarges existing practice somewhat, see former G.L. c. 261, § 25; previously a prevailing party could recover only $50 of the cost of printing his brief, unless the court allowed a larger discretionary sum; under Appellate Rule 26(c) the prevailing party recovers the necessary costs of producing the briefs at a rate not higher than such costs generally charged in the Commonwealth.

Downloads for Appellate Procedure Rule 26: Costs


Updates: Amended May 15, 1979, effective July 1, 1979