Amendments to Rules of Civil Procedure
[26 Pa.B. 4760]
And Now, this 17th day of September, 1996, the following amendments to the Chester County Rules of Civil Procedure are hereby adopted, effective thirty (30) days after publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin, in accordance with Pa.R.C.P. No. 239(d).
THOMAS G. GAVIN,
I. Add the following comment following Rule 4007.1.B:
Comment: See Rule 206.1.A.(1) for certification required with discovery motions and petitions.
II. Amend Rule 206.1.A.(1) as follows:
1. The present rule shall be renumbered to become subparagraph (a).
2. Add the following as Rule 206.1.(A)(1)(b):
(b) Discovery motions and petitions. Any motion or petition relating to discovery must be accompanied by a certificate of counsel for the moving party certifying that counsel has conferred with opposing counsel with respect to each matter set forth in the discovery motion or petition and has made a good faith effort to resolve each such matter but has been unable to resolve the differences which exist OR that counsel has made a good faith effort to confer but has been unable to do so. The certificate shall set forth the exact time, place and manner (which may be telephonic) of the conference or, in a case in which counsel for the moving party cannot furnish such certificate, counsel shall furnish an alternative certificate stating that opposing counsel has refused to so confer. The alternative certificate shall also set forth the efforts made by counsel for the moving party to obtain compliance by opposing counsel and such other facts and circumstances as exist to justify the absence of the required certificate. All counsel have an affirmative obligation to confer and discuss discovery matters and make a good faith effort to resolve such differences as may exist. The court at its discretion may strike, dismiss or deny the petition or motion for failure of the moving party to comply with the certification requirements of this rule or may grant relief based solely upon the unreasonable refusal of opposing counsel to confer despite reasonable and good faith efforts of moving counsel to arrange such conference.
III. Amend Rule 249.3, Order of Trial Readiness, to read as follows:
(a) A category A matter shall be presumptively deemed ready for trial twelve (12) months from the date of the initiation of the suit and a category C matter (compulsory arbitrations) in which there has been an appeal from the award of arbitrators shall be presumptively deemed ready for trial two (2) months from the date of the filing of the appeal. Such matters shall immediately thereafter be placed on the trial list of the judge to whom the case is assigned, unless prior thereto an order has been entered deferring the placement on the trial list until a later date. Such order may be entered by the court on its own motion or pursuant to the procedures set forth in paragraph (b) below.
(b) To obtain relief from the initial automatic trial listing pursuant to paragraph (a) above and, thereafter, from any deferred trial listing, a party must file a request for an administrative conference to be held in accordance with Rule 249.1. The first request for administrative conference must be filed no later than eight (8) months after the date of initiation of suit, except in category C matters. In category C matters, the first request for an administrative conference must be filed no later than ten (10) days after the filing of the appeal from the award of arbitrators. All subsequent requests for administrative conferences must be filed not less than thirty (30) days prior to the trial listing date. The request for an administrative conference must specify that deferment of trial listing will be requested at the conference. The request for administrative conference shall be filed of record and a copy thereof served upon counsel of record for each other party to the action, each unrepresented party, if any, the Court Administrator, and the assigned judge.
(c) At any time prior to placement of a case on the trial list pursuant to the procedures set forth above, the court, either on its own motion or upon agreement of the parties or upon application of any party, may determine that any matter is ready for trial, in which event the court shall file a trial readiness order and the court administrator shall then notify all parties that the case has been placed on the trial list.
(d) Category C matters shall be governed by C.C.R.C.P. No. 1301.1 et seq., unless and until an appeal from the award of arbitrators has been filed. Following the filing of such appeal, the rules set forth above and below shall apply.
(e) Interim Rule. For the purposes of this rule only, the ''date of the initiation of the suit'' shall be deemed to be July 1, 1996, for all cases commenced prior to January 1, 1996, and the ''date of the initiation of the suit'' shall be deemed to be September 1, 1996, for all cases commenced on or after January 1, 1996, but prior to September 1, 1996. For all other cases, the ''date of the initiation of the suit'' shall be the actual date upon which the suit was or is commenced. For all Category C matters in which the award of arbitrators has been entered or is entered on or before the effective date of these amendments, the ''date of the filing of the appeal'' from the award of arbitrators shall be deemed to be the twentieth (20th) day following the effective date of these rules. However, this rule shall not affect any case for which a trial readiness order has already been filed nor limit the application of paragraph (c) above.
IV. Amend Rule 249.1, Administration of Civil Cases, as follows:
Amend subparagraph A to read as follows:
A. The court shall conduct one or more administrative conferences in each case in which the judge is requested to do so by any party and may conduct administrative conferences in any matter at any time or times upon the judge's own motion.
No change to subparagraphs B or C.
V. Amend Rule 1303.2, Pre-Arbitration Memorandum, as follows:
Amend the introductory paragraph to Rule 1303.2(a) to read as follows:
(a) At least seven (7) days before the date of the arbitration hearing, all parties shall file with the Prothonotary, in triplicate, a memorandum in the form provided and shall immediately serve a copy on each party. This memorandum shall set forth the following:
(1) . . .
VI. Amend Rule 206.1.C.(4) as follows:
Amend the second sentence of Rule 206.1.C.(4) to read as follows:
All other parties shall file their responses, if any, to the motion and their briefs within fifteen (15) days of the filing of the motion, except with respect to motions for summary judgment, as to which responses and briefs must be filed within thirty (30) days after service of the motion.
VII. Add the following comment following Rule 206.1.C.:
Comment: See Rule 1035.1(A) and also Pa.R.C.P. Nos. 1035.1 et seq. with regard to motions for summary judgment.
VIII. Add Rule 1035.1(A) as follows:
Procedural requirements with respect to arguments and briefs are generally set forth in Rules 206.1.A.(1) et seq., and in particular in Rules 206.1.C, 206.2, 210.1 and 211.1. These rules apply to motions for summary judgment as well as to all other motions. Pursuant to Rule 206.1.C.(4) and Pa.R.C.P. No. 1035.3(a), a response to a motion for summary judgment must be filed within thirty (30) days after service of the motion. Accordingly, pursuant to these Rules and to Pa.R.C.P. No. 1035.3(d), if no response is timely filed, the court may consider such a motion as uncontested and unopposed and may enter summary judgment against a party who does not respond.
IX. To the extent that Rules 2956.1 and 2971.1 conflict with the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, and in particular with Pa.R.C.P. Nos. 2973.1 et seq., adopted April 1, 1996, effective July 1, 1996, and to that extent only, Rules 2956.1 and 2971.1 are repealed.
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 96-1668. Filed for public inspection October 4, 1996, 9:00 a.m.]
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