Writing a motion for the court requires knowledge of the applicable laws and local rules of court that govern the motions' form, content, length and timing. Though certain elements must be included in different types of motions and the specifics of each case will influence the contents, a motion for the court generally identifies the parties, states the basis for the motion and states the relief that is sought.
According to the Virtual Self-Help Law Center, the California Rules of Court, Title 3 (Civil Rules), Division 11 (Law and Motion), Chapter 2 (Format of Motioned Papers), Rule 3.1112 requires that all motions filed in California courts must identify the party bringing the motion, name the parties to whom the motion is addressed, and state briefly the basis for the motion and the specific relief sought in the matter. Additionally, if the motion is challenging a pleading, then the motion must state the specific portion of the pleading that is being challenged.
The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law advises counsel and persons representing themselves to thoroughly familiarize themselves with any standing orders of the court, review local rules and consult with practitioners familiar with local requirements. Motions are usually accompanied by a memorandum of law and a proposed order, so anyone writing a motion to submit to the court should also become familiar with writing these documents.