Out-of-cycle amendments are coming to UTCR 5.100, which governs submission of proposed orders and judgments. The amendments will affect conventional filers and eFilers, but are designed to address the following concerns raised by judges who sign proposed orders and judgments using the new eCourt system:
- It is difficult, if not impossible, to know whether proposed orders or judgments are ready for judicial signature;
- A sufficient and uniform time period to object to proposed orders or judgments is presently lacking;
- Opposing parties need clear instructions on how to object to proposed orders or judgments; and
- Protocols are necessary to ensure that parties work to resolve objections before submitting disputed orders and judgments.
For clarity, the proposal to amend UTCR 5.100 breaks the rule up into three parts:
“As amended, the service component … requires service on the opposing party, and an opportunity for objection, as to any proposed order or judgment unless an exception applies. The rule is no longer limited to only those proposed orders and judgments submitted “in response to a ruling of the court.” The purpose of the updated wording is to ensure that the opposing party has a reasonable opportunity to object. The service component also sets out specific notice requirements and lengthens the time between service and submission.” Read more here.
The objection component is new and requires service of a written, dated, and signed objection within 7 days of the date that the proposed order or judgment was sent to the opposing party. If an objection is served by the opposing party, the drafting party must make a reasonable effort to resolve the objection before submitting the proposed order or judgment to the court. However, opposing parties are also permitted to file objections directly with the court.
Practice Tip: Opposing parties who file an objection directly with the court are required to include in the caption “Objection to Proposed [Order/Judgment]” and must describe the nature of the proposed order or judgment. If the opposing party requests oral argument, the request must be stated in the caption.
More details are available here.
The submission component:
- Retains the Certificate of Service requirement
- Adds a “Certificate of Readiness” requirement
- Clarifies that a proposed order or judgment may be submitted sooner than the 7-day period for objection, if:
- the opposing party has stipulated to or approved the order or judgment, or
- the opposing party has objected and the objections are resolved or ready for resolution.
The “Certificate of Readiness” certifies that the proposed order or judgment is ready for judicial signature or that objections are ready for resolution, and provides the “readiness” reason. It will eliminate the need for judges to access multiple documents in the eCourt system to ensure that a proposed order or judgment is ready for signature.
Practice Tip: UTCR 5.100(3)(c) sets out the language to be used in a “Certificate of Readiness.” Filers are required to use substantially the same form. When the rule is adopted, maximize efficiency by copying and pasting the “Certificate of Readiness” language into a template that you can re-use each time you submit a proposed Order or Judgment.
Read more here.
This is the second go-around in the proposed amendment process for UTCR 5.100. Public comment on proposed revisions will be accepted until August 17. Since the intention is to amend the rule out-of-cycle, expect an effective date around or before September 1.
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