Title 249--PHILADELPHIA RULES
Procedure for Assignment of Motions for Disposition in Day Backward Cases; General Court Regulation No. 96-1
[26 Pa.B. 585]
Philadelphia Civil Rules No. *206.1 and *206.2 govern the filing, assignment and disposition of all motions, petitions and preliminary objections filed in Philadelphia County pursuant to Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure. In order to better acquaint the bar with the Court's assignment practices in light of the various programs the Court has adopted to reduce its present inventory and manage its case load, the within regulation shall summarize and clarify the method of assignment and disposition of Motions, Petitions and Preliminary Objections in Day Backward cases.
This General Court Regulation does not apply to Day Forward cases (defined as all major civil jury trial cases filed on or after January 3, 1995). See General Court Regulation Nos. 95-1 and 95-2.
1. Definitions. For Purposes of this Order:
a. The term ''Day Backward Cases'' shall refer to all major civil jury trial cases filed prior to January 1995 (except for cases assigned to the Mass Tort Program);
b. The term ''motions'' shall also include petitions, and the term ''petitions'' shall also include motions; and
c. The term ''Discovery Motions'' shall refer to all discovery motions (including any motions for sanctions or otherwise seeking to enforce orders relating to discovery) as well as all other petitions and motions which, pursuant to Phila. Civ. R. *206.2, are to be referred to the Discovery Judge (i.e. motions to amend captions or pleadings; motions to consolidate or sever; motions to enforce settlements; motions in limine regarding limited tort waiver and such additional matters as may be provided by the Administrative Judge of the Trial Division).
2. General Policy
a. Except as provided in subparagraph 2(d) hereof, all Discovery Motions shall be assigned to the Discovery Judge.
b. Except as provided in subparagraphs 2(c) and (d) and paragraph 3 of this Order, all motions in Day Backward Cases (other than Discovery Motions) shall be assigned to the Motion Court Judges.
c. Except as provided in subparagraph 2(d) and paragraph 3 of this Order, upon notification by the Administrative Judge of the Trial Division to the Manager of Motion Court that a particular group of Day Backward Cases (for example, all Day Backward Cases filed from January 1993 through June 1993) is ready for assignment to Settlement Masters as part of the Day Backward Program, all motions (except for Discovery Motions) in such group of cases filed after the date of such notification shall be assigned to the Day Backward Judicial Team Leader to whose team the case is assigned, for disposition either by the Judicial Team Leader or by a judge of his Day Backward Judicial Team designated by the Judicial Team Leader.
d. Except as provided in paragraph 3 of this order, once a Day Backward Judicial Team Leader has set a trial date for a particular Day Backward Case, all motions (including Discovery Motions) in such case thereafter shall be assigned, for disposition either by the Judicial Team Leader or by a judge of his Day Backward Judicial Team designated by the Judicial Team Leader. Discovery Motions to be assigned to the Day Backward Judicial Team Leader in accordance with this paragraph 2(d) and answers thereto shall be subject to the following requirements:
i. all such motions and answers shall be filed with the Prothonotary and Motion Court which shall thereupon assign them to the Day Backward Judicial Team Leader;
ii. the time for filing any answer shall be fifteen (15) days after the filing of the motion, unless such time is increased or decreased by the Day Backward Judicial Team Leader; and
iii. all such motions and answers shall be in writing and shall, except as provided hereinabove in this paragraph 2(d), comply with the requirements of Phila. Civ. R. No. *206.1.
3. Exceptions to General Policy
a. All motions (including Discovery Motions) in a Day Backward Case that has been specially assigned by the Administrative Judge of the Trial Division to a particular individual judge (including, but not limited to, class actions), shall be assigned to that particular individual judge.
b. All petitions in Day Backward Cases filed pursuant to Joint General Court Regulation No. 93-2 (pertaining to approval of compromises involving minors or incompetent/incapacitated persons and wrongful death and/or survival actions) shall continue to be assigned in accordance with said Joint General Court Regulation.
c. All petitions for reconsideration of any order entered in a Day Backward Case shall be assigned to the judge who entered the order.
d. All motions for Day Backward Cases for delay damages pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. No. 238 and all motions for post-trial relief pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. No. 207.1 shall be assigned to the judge who presided at the trial of the case.
e. All motions in Day Backward Cases for service pursuant to special order of Court in accordance with Pa.R.C.P. No. 430, or for alternative service in accordance with Phila. Civ. R. 430.1, shall be assigned to the Motion Court Judges.
f. All Petitions for Extraordinary Relief in Day Backward cases shall be assigned to the Administrative Judge of the Trial Division.
g. All Motions relating to execution on a Judgment or for supplemental relief in aid of execution shall be assigned to the Motion Court Judges. All motions to open judgment, all motions to strike a judgment, and all other motions filed in a Day Backward Case after judgment has been entered (except for Discovery Motions, as defined in subparagraph 1(c) hereto) shall be assigned to the Judge who entered the underlying judgment, or if none, to the Motion Court Judges.
h. All petitions for medical examinations under the No-Fault Act shall be assigned to the Discovery Judge.
i. All petitions to name an arbitrator or arbitrators pursuant to an insurance policy or another form of contract shall be assigned to the Administrative Judge of the Trial Division.
j. All Petitions for an Advanced Trial Listing shall be assigned as provided in Trial Division General Court Regulation No. 94-2.
4. Civil Motions Procedure
a. Filing. In order to be accepted for filing, every motion in a Day Backward Case must comply with all rules of court, must be accompanied by a Motion Court Cover Sheet and service copies. In order to better advise the bar as to the assignment of their motions, concurrently with the filing of every motion in a Day Backward Case, Civil Motions staff will stamp all service copies of the Motion Cover Sheet to designate the control number assigned to the motion and to designate that the motion has been assigned to:
i. Motion Court Judges (by name of judge),
ii. Discovery Judge,
iii. The Applicable Day Backward Judicial Team (by name of Judicial Team Leader), or
iv. Specially Assigned Judge (by name of Judge)
and such control number and judicial assignment shall be promptly entered by Civil Motions staff on the docket for the case.
In the event a case is assigned to a Judicial Team or Individual Judge after a Motion is filed, but before a Response is filed, the Motion shall be referred to the later assigned Judicial Team or Individual Judge.
b. Service. In accordance with Phila. Civ. R. No. *206.1(C), the moving party shall serve on all attorneys of record and unrepresented parties within two (2) business days of its filing a conformed copy of the Petition and Motion Cover Sheet setting forth the Motion Control Number and judicial assignment.
5. No Authorization for Filing
The purpose of this order is to establish a procedure for assignment of motions for disposition in Day Backward Cases. Nothing in this order is intended or shall be construed to authorize the filing of any motions which have been precluded by any administrative order or other order of any judge of this Court.
This General Court Regulation is promulgated in accordance with the April 11, 1986 Order of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, Eastern District, No. 55, Judicial Administration, Docket No. 1, Phila. Civ. R. *51 and Pa.R.C.P. 239, and shall become effective immediately. As required by Pa.R.C.P. 239, the original regulation shall be filed with the Prothonotary in a docket maintained for General Court Regulations issued by the Administrative Judge of the Trail Division; and copies shall be submitted to the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts, the Legislative Reference Bureau and the Civil Procedural Rules Committee. Copies of the regulation shall also be submitted to Legal Communications, Ltd., The Legal Intelligencer, Jenkins Memorial Law Library and the Law Library for the First Judicial District.
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 96-173. Filed for public inspection February 9, 1996, 9:00 a.m.]
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