Title 255--LOCAL COURT RULES
Amended Rules of Procedure; S.96 1996
[26 Pa.B. 439]
Order of Court
And Now, this 17 day of January, 1996, at 1:10 p.m., Schuylkill County Civil Rules of Procedure, Criminal Rules of Procedure for the Court of Common Pleas and District Justice Courts and Judicial Administration are amended and/or adopted for use in the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, Twenty-First Judicial District, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, effective thirty days after publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The Prothonotary of Schuylkill County is Ordered and Directed to do the following:
1) File seven (7) certified copies of this Order and Rules with the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts.
2) File two (2) certified copies of this Order and Rules with the Legislative Reference Bureau for publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
3) File one (1) certified copy of this Order and Rules with the Pennsylvania Civil Procedural Rules Committee, Criminal Procedural Rules Committee and the Domestic Relations Committee.
4) Forward one (1) copy with the Law Library of Schuylkill County for publication in the Schuylkill Legal Record.
5) Keep continuously available for public inspection copies of this Order and Rule.
It is further Ordered that said rules as they existed prior to the amendment is hereby repealed and annulled on the effective date of said rule as amended, but no right acquired thereunder shall be disturbed.
JOSEPH F. McCLOSKEY,
Court of Common Pleas
of Schuylkill County
Twenty-First Judicial District
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE
FOR COMMON PLEAS COURT
APPEALS FROM CERTAIN ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES
RULE 14: APPEALS FROM ZONING BOARD AND GOVERNMENTAL AGENCIES
I. PENNSYLVANIA MUNICIPALITIES PLANNING CODE (nothing contained in this Local Rule shall super
sede the requirements of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code).
A. APPEAL NOTICE. A land use appeal shall be in writing and shall contain the following:
1. A caption in substantially the following form: In Re: The Appeal of (Name) from the decision of the __________
(Name of local agency, such as zoning hearing board or governing body).
2. Where applicable and where available to the appellant, in separately numbered paragraphs and in the following order:
a. name and address of the appellant.
b. name and address of the local agency the decision of which is being appealed.
c. the name and address of the owners, both real and equitable of any real estate which may be the subject of the application and an identification of any real estate which may be the subject matter of the application.
d. a chronology of the case, including the following dates:
i. date of application.
ii. date of filing application with the zoning officer.
iii. date of action of the zoning officer or other official.
iv. date of appeal or request to local agency.
v. dates of all hearings.
vi. date of decision or adjudication from which the appeal has been taken.
vii. date decision received.
e. the purpose for which the original application was made.
f. all specific legal and factual grounds relied upon for the appeal.
g. prayer for relief specifying all relief sought by the appellant.
3. A certification by the appellant that a transcript of the proceedings has been ordered, if one is not already in existence. At the time of the ordering, a party must make satisfactory arrangements with the reporter for payment of the costs of the transcript.
1. Notice of intervention under Section 1004-A of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code shall be under caption of the appeal and contain:
i. name and address of intervenor.
ii. nature of interest of intervenor in the proceedings.
iii. statement setting forth the factual and legal circumstances under which the intervenor alleges a right to intervene.
iv. a brief summary of the position of intervenor and grounds therefor.
2. All other intervention shall be governed by the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure.
3. The petitioner seeking intervention in a land use appeal shall comply with the procedures in Sch.R.C.P. 206 to submit the matter to the Court.
1. In making its return, the local agency shall submit its entire record, including but not limited to:
a. all original papers filed, in chronological order, commencing with the application and all documents relating thereto, including correspondence;
b. the transcript of testimony in existence and available to the local agency within the time it is required to make its return;
c. the complete current zoning ordinance of the municipality, including maps, and any relevant prior ordinances or citation of, and copies of rules or regulations which affect the appeal; and
d. the findings of fact and conclusions of law of the local agency and its decision.
e. the names and addresses of all persons officially recognized as parties by the local agency.
2. The return on the certiorari shall be verified by the chairman or other officer designated by the local agency.
3. Notice of making the return shall be given forthwith by the Prothonotary to appellant who shall, within 4 days after receipt of the notice of making the return, give written notice of the return to the municipality, any applicant before the local agency and any property owner, whether real or equitable, whose land is the subject matter of the application, as well as all other parties to the original proceedings. The appellant shall contemporaneously file a certificate of service of such notice, setting forth the name and address of each party served and the manner of service.
4. If a transcript subsequently becomes available, a supplemental return, containing such transcript, shall be promptly filed, and notice given as required by I.C.3. above.
D. SUBMISSION TO COURT
1. Unless otherwise ordered by the court or by stipulation of the parties, the only issues before the court shall be those raised by the specific legal or factual grounds and prayers for relief in the appeal notice pursuant to subsection A(2)(f) and (g), and supplemental grounds filed in writing within 5 days of receipt of notice that the transcript has been filed.
2. Upon receiving notice of the return on certiorari, any party may submit the appeal to the court for disposition by praecipe pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 206. The submitting party shall contemporaneously file a brief supporting that party's position and an affidavit of service on all other parties or their counsel. The briefs of all other parties shall be filed within 20 days of such service. If any party believes that the proper consideration of the appeal requires the presentation of additional evidence, that party shall, on or before the date when that party's brief is due, file a written motion, in compliance with Sch.R.C.P. 206, and shall be accompanied by the praecipe mandated by Sch.R.C.P. 205.3, setting forth specifically the nature of the proposed additional testimony and the reasons why such testimony is necessary for the proper consideration of the appeal.
3. In the absence of a motion to present additional testimony, the Court may render a decision based solely on the record, briefs of the parties and oral argument if requested; may direct that the parties brief and/or argue additional issues; or may remand the matter for additional hearing. If a motion for additional hearing is filed and it is shown that proper consideration of the appeal requires the presentation of additional evidence, the Court may hold a hearing to receive additional evidence, may remand the case to the body, agency or officer whose decision or order has been brought up for review if permitted by law, or may refer the case to a referee to receive additional evidence.
4. An appeal from a decision on remand shall be docketed to the original docket from which the remand was made. Only issues arising from the remand may be raised. All requirements of all parties (including, but not limited to, the local agency), as elsewhere provided in this Rule shall apply to an appeal after remand.
II. LOCAL AGENCY LAW. Except as otherwise provided in the Local Agency Law, 2 Pa.C.S.A. § 101 et seq., appeals taken under the Local Agency Law shall be governed by part I above to the extent applicable.
III. OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES. Appeals taken from any governmental action for which no other procedure is provided by statute or rule shall be governed by part I above to the extent applicable.
RULE 15: SUPERSEDEAS IN APPEALS
Unless otherwise provided by law, the grant of a supersedeas or a stay of proceedings in connection with appeals shall be discretionary with the Courts and may be upon ex parte application; provided, however, that the other parties of record in the proceedings shall have the right to petition for the withdrawal of such supersedeas or stay.
RULES OF CONSTRUCTION
RULE 51: TITLE AND CITATION OF RULES
(a) All Civil procedural rules adopted by the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County shall be known as the Schuylkill County Rules of Civil Procedure and shall be cited as ''Sch.R.C.P. ____ .''
RULE 52: EFFECTIVE DATE OF RULES
These rules are intended to supplement and implement the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, and they shall govern the practice and procedure in the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County when appropriate. These Rules have been filed with the Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts on ______ , as required by Pa.R.J.A. 103(c)(1) and shall be effective from such date.
RULE 76: DEFINITIONS
(a) Unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the words and phrases used in any rule promulgated by the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County shall be given the same meanings as said words and phrases are given by Pa.R.C.P. 76, except:
(1) ''Court'' or ''The Court'' shall mean the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County.
(2) ''Rule'' shall mean any rule of court promulgated by the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County.
RULE 101: PRINCIPLES OF INTERPRETATION
(a) In the construction of any Schuylkill Rule, the principles set forth in Pa.R.C.P. 101 through 153 shall be employed whenever possible.
RULE 105.1: APPROVAL OF SURETIES AND BONDSMEN, LIMITATIONS
(a) Sureties and bondsmen required at the commencement of actions shall be approved by the Court. No attorney, sheriff's officer, officer of the court, or person concerned in the issue or execution of process, shall become bail except by written leave of Court.
(b) Individual Sureties
When other than corporate security is offered, the party offering it shall at the same time present an affidavit of justification of the surety in the following form for approval of the Court:
JUSTIFICATION OF SURETY
State of Pennsylvania
County of Schuylkill
______ , being duly sworn, depose(s) and says(s):
1. I (we) reside at ______ in the County of ______ and are by occupation ______ .
2. I am (We are) the owner(s) of real estate in said County of ______ , consisting of a piece of ground in size ______ , situate at No. ____ , in the ______ of ______ , which is improved with the following buildings:
3. The said property was obtained by me (us) by deed or will from ______ in the year ____ , the title is in my (our) name(s) alone, and the deed or will is recorded in Schuylkill County in Deed (Will) Book Volume ____ , page ____ .
4. I am (We are) surety for the following named persons, and no others, in the following amounts:
5. I (We) do not contemplate the sale of the above described property and am (are) not now negotiating any sale of the same.
6. There are no encumbrances upon said property, except:
7. The said property has not been offered and accepted as bail or security for any other bail or bond still in force, except ______ .
8. The above property is assessed by the County for taxation in the sum of $ ______ , and I (we) believe that at present said property would sell for $ ______ County Assessment Code No. _____ .
9. I (we) have read over the foregoing affidavit and swear the facts set forth therein are true and correct.
Sworn and subscribed before me
this ______ day of ______ , 19 __ .
RULE 107: PUBLICATION
(a) The Schuylkill Legal Record is designated the legal publication for the Court of Common Pleas of Schuylkill County
BUSINESS OF COURTS
RULE 202: CONTINGENT FEE AGREEMENT
(a) All moneys collected by an attorney under a contingent fee agreement shall be paid, after the deduction of fees and proper charges for costs and expenses of the case, directly to the client without other deduction unless otherwise authorized in writing by the client.
RULE 205.1: FILING OF PAPERS
(a) All papers relating to civil matters shall be filed in the Office of the Prothonotary, with the exception of support matters which shall be filed with the Domestic Relations Section in accordance with appropriate statutes, Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, and these rules, with a case number and year thereon and the date and hour of filing to be stamped thereon by the Prothonotary or Clerk of the Domestic Relations Section.
(b) Upon receipt by the Prothonotary of the record of a case transferred from another judicial district, the Prothonotary shall assign a case number and year to the action and shall notify all counsel of record thereof.
(c) All papers, pleadings, and documents filed with the Prothonotary and Domestic Relations Section shall be on 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper, and where signatures are required, such signatures shall be in black or blue-black ink.
(d) Prepayment of costs for filing. The Prothonotary, Clerk of Court of Common Pleas, Register of Wills, Clerk of the Orphans' Court Division, Clerk of the Domestic Relations Section, and the Recorder of Deeds shall have the right to require payment for the filing, recording, or service of a paper or pleading at the time same is filed and, if said officer is unable to determine in advance the amount so required, he shall have a right to require a reasonable sum as a deposit against the costs for filing, recording, or service of a paper or pleading at the time same is filed.
RULE 205.2: PAPERS AND RECORDS
(a) The record papers in the Office of the Prothonotary and Domestic Relations Section shall be in the custody of said officials who shall be responsible for their safekeeping. No person, other than the Prothonotary or the Chief of the Domestic Relations Section, or their duly authorized clerks, shall have access to the files in which such record papers are kept.
(b) Auditors, masters, and other similar officers appointed by the Court shall have authority to remove such records as may be necessary for the purposes of their appointment, and they shall return the same within three (3) months unless the Court authorizes their longer retention.
(c) None other than those named in (b) shall be permitted to remove papers from the Office of the Prothonotary or Domestic Relations Section without the written Order of Court. It shall be the duty of the Prothonotary and the Chief of the Domestic Relations to insure full compliance with this rule.
(d) The record papers may be examined and copied by any other party in interest only in the office of the Prothonotary or Domestic Relations Section. However, the rule copy of notes or testimony may not be photocopied.
(e) The Prothonotary shall keep and maintain the following dockets:
(1) Suit Docket
(2) Judgment Docket
(3) Federal Tax Lien Docket
(4) Secured Transactions Docket
(5) Fictitious Names Docket
RULE 205.3: PRAECIPE TO TRANSMIT
All filings which require action by a judge or an assignment by the Court Administrator (except certificates of readiness for arbitration or trial) shall be accompanied by a praecipe to transmit on Prothonotary Form 205.3, and shall indicate the nature of the filing and what action is being sought to move the matter forward. The purpose of the praecipe is to advise the Court of what may be necessary for a disposition (i.e. when a hearing is required; when a matter is ripe for disposition on the record; matters that can be immediately addressed) and to expedite action on the filing. Failure to file the praecipe to transmit or to indicate what action is required from the Court may result in denial of the relief.
RULE 206: PETITIONS
Petition and answer practice shall comport with Pa.R.C.P. 206 and the rule provisions of Pa.R.C.P. 206.6. Each petition shall be accompanied by a praecipe pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 205.3 indicating that the movant seeks issuance of a Rule to Show Cause. Upon filing, an Order in the form set forth herein shall be issued as of course and the parties shall thereafter proceed pursuant to the provisions of Pa.R.C.P. 206.
206.7(a)--In the event the respondent fails to file an answer to the rule within the time set forth in the rule, the movant may request to have the matter assigned to the court for entry of an appropriate order by praecipe pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 205.3.
206.7(c)--When a contested case is at issue, and the parties have complied with the fact finding provisions of Pa.R.C.P. 206.7(c) and 206.7(d), where applicable, either party may move to have the matter assigned to the court for disposition by praecipe pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 205.3.
In cases where an answer has been filed, each party shall file of record a brief in support of their respective position within twenty (20) days of the date of filing the praecipe to transmit the matter to the court for disposition. Unless otherwise requested, contested petitions shall be decided upon the record. Either party may request oral argument by filing a written request for oral argument with the Court Administrator of Schuylkill County.
Form of Order: Pursuant to this rule the petitioner shall attach to any petition seeking a rule to show cause a proposed order and the following form:
AND NOW, this ______ day of ______ , 19 __ , upon consideration of the foregoing petition, it is hereby DIRECTED that:
(1) A rule is issued upon the respondent to show cause why the petitioner is not entitled to the relief requested;
(2) The respondent shall file an answer to the petition within twenty (20) days of service upon the respondent;
(3) The petition shall be decided under Pa.R.C.P. No. 206.7;
(4) Depositions shall be completed within 60 days of this date unless otherwise extended by the court;
(5) Either party may request oral argument pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 206.
RULE 206A: MOTIONS
(a) All motions or petitions for appointment, and for all miscellaneous matters, shall be governed by this rule.
(b) An original and one copy of all motions or filings pursuant to this provision, together with a praecipe to transmit as set forth in Sch.R.C.P. 205.3, shall be filed with the Prothonotary, which office shall promptly transmit the pleadings to the court administrator for assignment to a Judge for disposition. The praecipe must indicate the nature of the action which is required by the Court to move the matter forward.
(c) All motions shall state with particularity the grounds on which they are based, and each shall be accompanied by a form of order which, if approved by the Court, would grant the relief sought by the motion. Every response in opposition to a motion shall be accompanied by a form of order, which, if approved by the Court, will deny or amend the relief sought by the motion.
(d) Every uncontested motion shall be accompanied by a certificate of counsel that such motion is uncontested, substantially in the form provided in subsection (h) of this rule.
Motions for final judgment on quiet title actions, where service was made by publication, shall contain a certificate of publication indicating the dates and sources of such publication.
(e) Every motion not certified as uncontested shall be accompanied by a memorandum containing a concise statement of the legal contentions and authorities relied upon in support of the motion and an affidavit of service upon the party against whom relief is sought, or to his attorney. Any party opposing the motion shall file and serve such answer or other response that may be appropriate, a memorandum in opposition, and an affidavit of service upon the other party within fifteen (15) days after service of the originating motion and supporting brief. In the absence of timely response, the motion may be treated as uncontested. The Court may require or permit further briefing, if appropriate.
(f) Any interested party may make a written request for oral argument on a motion. The Court may require oral argument, whether or not requested by a party.
(g) This rule does not apply to motions made during the actual trial of a case; nor to motions for post-trial relief under Pa.R.C.P. 227.1; nor to an application for special or preliminary injunction to the extent the Court may dispense with notice pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. 1531(a); nor to applications for continuance of a hearing before a master or permanent hearing officer; nor to petitions for special relief under the divorce code (See Sch.R.C.P. 1920;43); nor to allowable appeals from decisions or actions of state or local agencies where no such prior notice is required by the law or ordinance allowing the appeal.
______ hereby certifies that a copy of the attached petition/motion was served upon the party listed below, in the manner and date as set forth, and that the undersigned has received an affirmative response from that party indicating that the petition/motion is not opposed.
Date served: ______ Served upon: __________
Manner of Service: ______ __________
RULE 210: FORM OF BRIEFS
The brief of the moving party shall contain a history of the case, a statement of the issues involved, and argument. The brief of any responding party shall contain an argument and may contain a counter history of the case and a counterstatement of the issues involved.
RULE 211: ARGUMENT/ORAL ARGUMENT
Unless otherwise requested by counsel in writing all matters will be decided based upon the written arguments set forth in the briefs of the litigants. Requests for oral argument shall be submitted in writing to the assigned judge, or when there has not been a specific assignment to the Court Administrator, and shall be submitted not later that the date that the last brief is due to be filed. Failure to request oral argument in writing, including matters in which argument is required by rule (e.g. Pa.R.C.P. 1910.12(g)), will be deemed by the court to constitute an agreement by the parties to waive oral argument, and allow disposition on the record.
RULE 212.1: PRE-TRIAL LIST
(a) When a case is at issue, counsel shall proceed to complete discovery where desired and shall hold settlement meetings at which serious attempts shall be made by counsel to resolve the issues raised by the pleadings.
Thereafter, any party may list the case for pre-trial by filing a certificate of readiness on Prothonotary form 212. The Prothonotary shall then promptly forward the certificate to the Court Administrator. Failure to complete each item of Prothonotary Form 212 shall be cause for striking the case from the pre-trial list. Misrepresentations in the completion of this form which would delay the court process may be subject to the contempt powers of the Court.
(b) A copy of Prothonotary Form 212 shall be served on all counsel contemporaneously with the filing thereof. Within 10 days after filing of the form, opposing counsel may file with the Prothonotary written objections thereto stating the reasons, and shall serve a copy thereof upon the Court Administrator and other counsel. The Court Administrator shall promptly deliver the certificate and objections to the President Judge who shall promptly dispose of said objections.
(c) Each case on the pre-trial list shall be assigned by the President Judge to one of the Judges for pre-trial and trial proceedings. Thereupon, the Judge to whom a case is assigned shall summon the parties to a pre-trial conference.
(d) This rule shall be applicable to paternity cases where trial is demanded on the issue of paternity.
RULE 212.2: PRE-TRIAL CONFERENCE
(a) Pre-trial conferences shall be mandatory in all contested civil actions listed for trial by jury, and shall be held in the chambers of the Judge for the purposes set forth in Pa.R.C.P. 212.
(b) At least 1 week prior to the pre-trial conference, each of the parties shall submit a memorandum to the Court, with a copy to opposing counsel, containing:
1) A narrative statement of the facts which will be offered into evidence on behalf of that party.
2) The names and addresses of all witnesses the party expects to call, classifying them as witness to liability, non-liability, damages, diminution of damages, or expert.
3) A statement of the legal theory upon which the cause of action or defense is predicated, together with a complete citation of authorities relied on.
4) A complete list of photographs, contracts, maps, models, records or other documents or things intended to be used for evidence at the time of trial.
5) A written statement setting forth an itemized list of damages that any party intends to claim and prove at the time of trial.
6) A written detailed statement of items of claim for which a defense is believed available and the method to be used for proving such defense items.
7) A list of stipulations which opposing counsel reasonably can be expected to agree for purposes of avoiding need for proof.
8) A history of negotiations to date.
9) Where appropriate, a rough sketch illustrating the incident giving rise to the cause of action.
10) Copies of reports received from expert listed as a witness.
11) Such other matters as may be required by the Conference Judge.
(c) The attorneys who will actively try the case shall attend the pre-trial conference. At the time of the pre-trial conference, the parties or their authorized representatives shall be present or immediately available by telephone at the time of the conference. If a party, by contract or otherwise, has relinquished the right to settle and to control the conduct of the case, the person with such authority must be present or immediately available by telephone at the time of the conference. Any failure to comply with the foregoing may result in the imposition of sanctions.
(d) Failure to fully disclose in the pre-trial memorandum or the pre-trial conference the substance of the evidence as to liability, defenses, witnesses, exhibits, damages proposed to be offered at the trial, etc., may result in the exclusion of that evidence at the trial.
(e) The Judge may, at his discretion:
1) Require any party to file a supplemental memorandum, communicate to his client the recommendations of the Court or conduct additional negotiations.
2) Require the parties to submit points for charge on or before a designated date.
3) Schedule an additional pre-trial settlement conference.
4) Certify the case as ready for trial.
(f) Failure to file a pre-trial memorandum in accordance with these rules and/or failure to promptly attend the pre-trial conference may be deemed contempt of court and subject to such sanctions as the Court may impose.
RULE 212.3: CASES CERTIFIED FOR TRIAL
(a) All cases certified by the pre-trial Judge for trial shall be consolidated by the Court Administrator in a trial list according to the record age of the cases, giving priority to those cases as required by law or special Order of Court.
(b) At least 2 weeks before the first day of the next civil jury trials, the Court Administrator shall post the trial list in his office and in the office of the Prothonotary and shall also mail a copy of the trial list to each counsel, whose names appear on the certificate of readiness, for the cases listed.
(c) There shall be no call of the civil jury trial list. In the event of a settlement or discontinuance, counsel for plaintiff shall promptly notify the assigned judge. Continuances shall be granted only by the assigned judge and only for good cause shown.
(d) Paternity cases will be called for trial at the discretion of the Judge to whom such cases are assigned.
(e) Any attorney who appears as trial counsel in more than 2 cases on any civil trial list shall within 5 days after the list is posted identify to the Court Administrator which 2 trials he/she will try and the name and address of the associate counsel who will try the remaining cases. Trial counsel shall contemporaneously also notify opposing counsel. Upon failure of counsel to timely designate associate counsel as required, the Court Administrator shall strike from the trial list all of that trial counsel's cases except those 2 commenced earlier than the others.
RULE 213: CONSOLIDATION AND SEVERANCE OF ACTIONS AND ISSUES
It shall be the duty of counsel at the pre-trial conference to advise the Court of any pending case that arises out of the same facts or circumstances as the case on the trial list. The Court, either by application or on its own motion, may order such cases consolidated for trial and, if need be, continue the case on the trial list until the other case or cases are at issue for the purpose of consolidating them for trial.
RULE 216: APPLICATION FOR CONTINUANCE
Applications for continuance of any court scheduled proceedings shall be made to the scheduling judge in writing on the general continuance form available through the office of the Court Administrator. The movant shall comply with Pa.R.C.P. 216, indicate whether the request is opposed and specify the reasons for the request. If the request is due to a prior attachment of counsel, a copy of the scheduling notice or attachment order shall accompany the continuance application. Each request for continuance shall include a certification by counsel that his/her client has been informed about and agrees with the request for continuance.
RULE 216.1: MEDICAL WITNESSES
Medical witnesses shall be served with a subpoena to appear. All reasonable effort will be made to schedule the testimony of medical witnesses at times consistent with the schedule of such witness, provided that the progress of the proceedings are not unduly interfered with or delayed.
RULE 216.2: CONFLICT OF COUNSEL
(a) No case shall be continued because of a pending engagement of an attorney in any court, other than the Supreme Court of the United States, the Supreme, Superior or Commonwealth Courts of Pennsylvania, or a Federal Appeals Court. When it is known subsequent to the listing of the trial, that counsel will be engaged, counsel shall forthwith notify opposing counsel and the Court of such engagement.
RULE 217: COSTS ON CONTINUANCE
When an application for the continuance of any proceeding scheduled by the Court, or by a master appointed by the Court or by an officer of the Domestic Relations Section, is presented so close to the scheduled time for the proceeding as to cause undue inconvenience to opposing parties and/or their counsel, the Court may impose on the party making the application, or that party's counsel, the reasonable costs and expenses actually incurred by the opposing party which would not have been incurred if the application had been made more promptly. When determining the appropriateness of imposing costs and expenses, the Court shall consider the extent of notice to the parties when the proceeding was scheduled, the time when the applicant or counsel knew or should have known of the need for a continuance, how soon in advance of the scheduled proceeding the application for continuance was made and the inconvenience and expenses of opposing parties and their counsel.
RULE 223: CONDUCT OF THE JURY TRIAL
(a) The following rules shall apply to all civil jury trials.
(i) The attorney for a party who begins the examination or cross-examination of a witness must alone conduct it through all its stages unless otherwise permitted by the Court.
(ii) The mechanical or electronic recording of proceedings in the courtroom, without first obtaining leave of the Presiding Judge to do so, is forbidden.
(iii) The conduct of all trials shall be under the control and supervision of the Trial Judge, who shall be free to alter or change the usual procedure if the ends of justice so require.
RULE 225: OPENING AND CLOSING ARGUMENTS
(a) The defendant's attorney may make his opening speech immediately following the opening speech of the plaintiff's attorney or at the opening of the defendant's case. After the evidence is closed, only 1 attorney for each party or group of parties may address the jury. Closing addresses shall be limited to one for each party or group of parties and shall be made in the reverse order of presentation of testimony, so that the last defendant to present testimony will make the first closing and the first plaintiff to present testimony will make the final closing address.
RULE 226: POINTS FOR CHARGE
(a)(1) Points for charge shall be submitted to the Trial Judge as directed by pre-trial order of that Judge.
(2) The points for charges shall be in writing and shall be signed by counsel, and shall include a citation of authority justifying each point submitted.
(3) Unless otherwise directed by the Trial Judge, only those points for charge submitted in compliance with subsections (1) and (2) hereof will be considered by the trial Judge at the time of trial.
RULE 227.1: POST-TRIAL MOTIONS
(a) All motions for post-trial relief shall be filed in the Prothonotary's office and copies shall be served promptly upon the Trial Judge and all opposing counsel.
(b) A motion for post-trial relief which alleges after discovered evidence, misconduct of a party or the jury or any matter of fact which was not brought out at the trial, must be supported by affidavit stating the after discovery, the names of the witnesses in support of the motion, the substance of their expected testimony, and the party's belief of its sufficiency to change the verdict; otherwise such reasons will be disregarded.
(c) Upon receipt of a Motion for Post-trial Relief, the Trial Judge may promptly schedule a conference of counsel to resolve any dispute between the parties as to the portion of the trial record required for the disposition of the motion. If parties cannot agree, the Trial Judge shall enter an order designating the portions to be transcribed and assigning the costs of transcription. The Judge shall also at that time establish a briefing schedule. In the event a party fails to pay the estimated or final costs of transcription in accordance with Rule 5000.6 of the Schuylkill County Rules of Judicial Administration within 10 days after receipt of the stenographer's statement, the transcription of the record shall be deemed unnecessary to the disposition of the motions.
RULE 227.2: COURT EN BANC
(a) Should the Trial Judge, on the Judge's own motion, or on motion of a party, determine matters raised in the post-trial motion should be heard by a court en banc, the President Judge shall designate the members of the court who shall compose the panel.
RULE 262: CHANGE OF NAME--ADVERTISING
In all proceedings for a change of name, the notice required shall be published in the Schuylkill Legal Record and in a newspaper of general circulation in Schuylkill County, the last day of publication to appear at least seven (7) days before the date set for the hearing thereon.
RULE 301: BOARDS OF VIEWERS
(a) COMPOSITION AND APPOINTMENT OF BOARDS OF VIEWERS PURSUANT TO 42 Pa.C.S. § 214
The Board of Viewers shall consist of not less than nine (9) members, all of whom shall be adult residents of Schuylkill County. At least one-third (1/3) of its members shall be attorneys. Board members shall be appointed for a term of three (3) years by the Court of Common Pleas. Sitting board members may be reappointed for an additional term or terms of three (3) years upon expiration of their terms. Vacancies in an unexpired term of a board member shall be filled by the President Judge. The Court shall have the power to remove a board member at will.
(b) PETITIONS FOR APPOINTMENT OF A BOARD OF VIEWERS
Petitions for appointment of a Board of Viewers shall be accompanied by a praecipe to transmit pursuant to Sch.R.C.P. 205.3 and shall comply with Sch.R.C.P. 206A. In case of a vacancy in the Viewers appointed in a specific case before the panel files its report, the President Judge shall fill such vacancy by appointing another member of the Board of Viewers.
(c) APPEALS FROM DECISION OF VIEWERS
Any party who appeals to the court from the decision of the Viewers and sets forth in the appeal objections to the Viewers' Report other than to the amount of the award shall comply with Sch.R.C.P. 14.
(d) STENOGRAPHIC NOTES
Whenever, in the opinion of the Board of Viewers, it shall be desirable, accurate stenographic notes of the hearing shall be taken and copies of such notes shall be furnished to the parties interested, when desired, upon payment of such sum as shall be fixed from time to time by the Court. The stenographer in any particular case shall be appointed from the list of the court-appointed stenographers by the Chairman of the Board of Viewers appointed to the case.
(e) COMPENSATION OF VIEWERS
(i) Compensation of Viewers shall be on a case by case basis in an amount fixed by the Court. A Petition for compensation shall be made at the time of filing of the Report of the Board of Viewers by a Petition for Compensation directed to the President Judge. A copy of the Petition for Compensation shall be served upon all parties, or their attorneys of record, at the time the Board transmits a copy of its report to them pursuant to 26 Pa.C.S. § 1-512.
(ii) Compensation approved by the President Judge pursuant to a Petition for Compensation shall be paid to the Viewers by Schuylkill County, taxed as costs against the condemnor and recoverable as such by Schuylkill County at any time after the date of approval by the President Judge.
(iii) Prior to the view, the Chairman of a Board of Viewers shall have the authority to require that the condemnor escrow an amount reasonably likely to cover the fees and costs of the Board. Such escrow shall be held by counsel for the condemnor or by the Prothonotary as the Chairman shall direct. Failure to deposit said funds may result in imposition of sanctions as the Court deems appropriate.
(f) RULES ALSO APPLY TO PROCEEDINGS NOT CONTROLLED BY THE EMINENT DOMAIN CODE
In addition to proceedings under the Eminent Domain Code, except as otherwise provided by statute, these rules shall also apply to actions to vacate public roadways, actions to open private roadways and actions under the Public Utility Code.
RULE 410.1: SERVICE BY PUBLICATION--EJECTMENT ACTIONS
Service by publication when appropriate shall be made by publishing the appropriate notice one (1) time in the Schuylkill Legal Record and a newspaper of general circulation in Schuylkill County. No further action can be taken until twenty (20) days after the date of publication. Proof of publication shall be filed in the Prothonotary's Office.
RULE 410.2: SERVICE--ACTION TO QUIET TITLE
Service by publication when appropriate, shall be made by publishing the appropriate notice one (1) time in the Schuylkill Legal Record and in a newspaper of general circulation in Schuylkill County. Said notice shall be in substantially the following form:
(CAPTION OF CASE)
(Name(s) of Defendant(s))
You are notified that the Plaintiff(s) has/have commenced an action against you to quiet the title to the following land:
If you wish to defend this action, you must enter a written appearance personally or by an attorney and file your defenses or objections in writing with the court. You are warned that if you fail to do so, the case may proceed without you and a judgment may be entered against you without further notice for the relief requested by the plaintiff. You may lose money or property or other rights important to you.
YOU SHOULD TAKE THIS NOTICE TO YOUR LAWYER AT ONCE. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A LAWYER OR CANNOT AFFORD ONE, GO TO OR TELEPHONE THE OFFICE SET FORTH BELOW TO FIND OUT WHERE YOU CAN GET LEGAL HELP.
(Note: For the office designated by the Court, See Sch.R.C.P. 1018.1)
(2) Service shall be complete upon appearance of the publication. Proofs of publication shall be filed before judgment or any other action is taken by plaintiff.
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