Order Rescinding Orphans' Court Rules 1.2A through 13.3A and Orphans' Court Rule 17.1A and Promulgating Orphans' Court Rules 1.1A through 10.4A
[46 Pa.B. 4129]
[Saturday, July 30, 2016]
And Now, this 19th day of July, 2016, pursuant to Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 1.5, the Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules 1.2A through 13.3A and Bucks County Orphans' Court Rule 17.1A are hereby vacated and replaced by Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules 1.1A through 10.4A.
These rules shall take effect on September 1, 2016, after publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
By the Court
JEFFREY L. FINLEY,
Rule 1.1A. Short Title and Citation.
These rules shall be known as Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules and shall be cited as Bucks County Orphans' Court Rule ______ .
Rule 1.5A. Local Rules.
In all cases where there are no separate Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rules or Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules, the Rules applicable to the Civil Division of the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County, including the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, where applicable, shall apply.
Rule 1.6A. Mediation by Agreement, Local Rule, or Court Order.
When the parties agree to mediation, or it is ordered by the court, the mediation shall be conducted by a mediator chosen from the list of certified mediators maintained by the clerk, unless otherwise agreed to by the parties. All proceedings by the court shall be stayed until the conclusion of the mediation.
Rule 1.7A. Entry and Withdrawal of Counsel.
Every attorney in any proceeding shall enter their appearance in writing, noting thereon the date on which entered, or by endorsement on papers filed, and shall not withdraw the same without leave of court. The attorneys' State Identification Number shall be included under their signature on all papers filed. The filing of papers by an attorney shall be an entry of appearance.
2. Attorneys Not Eligible to Practice
The following persons shall not practice as an attorney before this court: the clerk of this court; the Orphans' Court administrator; any law clerk of this court; the Register of Wills and the Sheriff of this county; the official stenographer; and persons otherwise prohibited, their assistants, deputies and clerks.
Rule 1.9A. Holidays and Emergencies.
If an audit of account, a return day or any time fixed for performing any judicial or clerical function falls on a holiday, a Saturday, a Sunday, or on a day when circumstances result in an unforeseen or unexpected cessation of courthouse function, the next following day, not a holiday, a Saturday, or a Sunday shall be the day for the audit of account, the return day, or the time for the performance of the judicial or clerical function, unless otherwise provided by these Rules.
Rule 2.1A. Sessions of Court.
The court will sit in stated session on the first Monday of every month for the presentation for audit of accounts and such other business as may properly come before the court.
Rule 2.4A. Additional Receipts and Disbursements.
Receipts and disbursements received or made after filing the account and petition for adjudication/statement of proposed distribution may be accounted for in a supplemental account, which shall be signed and verified by the accountant(s) and filed with the clerk, with notice in the same manner as required by Pa.O.C. Rule 2.5(a)—(g) with respect to an account. A copy of the supplemental account shall be presented to the court at the audit.
Rule 2.6A. Filing with the Clerk.
1. Filing For a Particular Audit
Accounts to appear on a particular audit list must be filed not later than the fifth Wednesday preceding the session of court when that audit list will be called, except when that Wednesday falls on a holiday in which event accounts must be filed not later than the next preceding non-holiday.
2. When Audit List To Be Called
The audit list will be called, and accounts thereon will be audited, unless another date therefor be specially fixed, on the first Monday of every month of the year, unless such first Monday falls on a holiday or on a day when circumstances result in an unforeseen or unexpected cessation of courthouse function, in which event said audit list will be called and accounts thereon audited on the next following day not a holiday, or when courthouse functions have resumed in compliance with Bucks County Orphans' Court Rule 1.9A. Each audit list shall include accounts continued from previous audit lists and new accounts eligible for audit.
At the call of the monthly audit list, counsel for the accountant (or associated counsel authorized and prepared to act as such on behalf of the accountant), as well as counsel for any other party or interested parties who desire to be heard (or accountant or other party or parties, in interest in propria persona if not represented by counsel), shall be personally present in open court and shall note their appearance and such other matters as may be appropriate upon appearance slips to be filed with the court at that time.
Rule 2.7A. Objections to Accounts or Petitions for Adjudication/Statements of Proposed Distribution.
When objections to an account have been filed, the account of that estate will be presented for audit at the stated meeting of court at which the account is called for audit, but the merits of the objections will not then be heard. A pretrial conference pursuant to Bucks County Orphans' Court Rule 7.1B will be scheduled, and thereafter a time for a hearing thereon will be fixed by the court.
Rule 2.9A. Confirmation of Accounts; Awards.
The court in the adjudication, when requested or found advisable, or in any case when real estate is to be awarded in kind, may direct the accountant to file a schedule of distribution in conformity with the awards of the adjudication. Attached to such schedule when filed shall be a certification by the accountant and counsel for the accountant:
a. that the schedule is correct and in accordance with the adjudication;
b. that notice of the filing thereof has been duly given, or that the same is unnecessary by reason of a written approval of the schedule filed therewith by all interested parties affected thereby or by counsel of record.
Notice of the filing of a schedule of distribution shall be given in writing, together with a copy of the schedule, prior to the filing thereof, to all interested parties who may be affected thereby, or their counsel of record, who do not attach or file their written approval with the schedule. Proof of notice shall be filed with the clerk.
Written objections to a schedule of distribution may be filed within 10 days after the filing of the schedule and shall indicate in what respect the schedule is incorrect or fails to conform to the adjudication. The filing of objections shall be accompanied by a form of Order for Hearing and a certificate of service.
4. No Filed Objections
If no objections to the schedule of distribution are filed within 10 days after its filing, the accountant shall file a motion with the court requesting confirmation of the schedule of distribution. Upon issuance of a decree of confirmation from the court, the accountant shall have authority to make any necessary assignments, and transfers of securities or other assets awarded in kind, and the schedule of distribution shall be deemed and considered as attached to and constituting a part of the adjudication.
Rule 2.10A. Foreign Heirs and Unknown Distribu-tees.
The report contemplated by Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 2.10(b) shall be submitted as an exhibit to the petition for adjudication and shall include substantially the following:
1. Unknown Distributee
If it appears that the identity or whereabouts of a distributee is unknown, or there are no known heirs, the fiduciary shall submit a written report as an exhibit to the petition for adjudication, verified by the fiduciary or their counsel, which shall set forth:
a. the nature of the investigation made to locate the heirs of the decedent, in complete detail; and
b. in cases of intestacy, or where there are no known heirs, a family tree, as complete as possible under the circumstances supported by such documentary evidence as the fiduciary has been able to obtain.
The term ''investigation'' as used in this Rule shall include an inquiry of or to as many of the following as may be pertinent and feasible: residents of the household in which the decedent resided; friends and neighbors; labor union membership; places of employment; social, fraternal or beneficial organizations; insurance records; religious membership; school records; Social Security, Veterans' Administration, or military service records; naturalization records, if not native born; and such other sources of information as the circumstances may suggest.
2. Foreign Distributee
If the fiduciary requests the court to withhold distribution to a foreign distributee, they shall submit as an exhibit to the petition for adjudication a written report, verified by the fiduciary or their counsel, in which shall be set forth:
a. the relationship of the distributee to the decedent, and any available information concerning their present whereabouts;
b. in cases of intestacy, a family tree, as complete as possible under the circumstances, supported by such documentary evidence as the fiduciary has been able to obtain; and
c. the reasons for the request that distribution be withheld, and the suggested manner of withholding.
3. Foreign Distributee. Notice to Attorney General
When at the audit of an account or other proceeding in any estate in this court, it appears that any distributee is not a resident of the United States and that distribution to them might or should be withheld, notice of all of the facts and circumstances shall be given to the Attorney General who will be requested to participate in the proceedings as amicus curiae.
Rule 2.11A. Appointment of Official Examiners.
Whenever an examination of assets is ordered in connection with an accounting, the order of appointment shall be included in the adjudication of the account, and the examiner shall make his examination after the schedule of distribution shall have been filed and approved, so that the assets distributable by fiduciaries, which are the assets to be examined, will have been determined.
2. Reports and Fees
Reports of examiners shall be filed with the clerk. The examiner's fee shall be fixed and awarded by the court when acting on the report, usually payable out of the assets examined, unless circumstances warrant otherwise.
PETITION PRACTICE AND PLEADING
Rule 3.1A. Petitions Generally.
Petitions and applications requiring action by the court shall be filed with the clerk. The clerk shall enter on the document the date and time filed and shall assign to each new matter a file number. The file number and the name of the matter shall be included in the caption of all papers filed in court or in the clerk's office.
Rule 3.5A. Mode of Proceeding on Petition.
The procedures set forth in Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 206.4(c), relating to the mode of proceeding on rules to show cause, are applicable in the Orphans' Court Division.
This applies in situations where personal jurisdiction has already been established through citation practice and a citation is not required by Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rules or Pennsylvania Statutes.
Rule 3.7A. Time for Filing and Service of Responsive Pleadings.
If a responsive pleading is filed which raises disputed issues of material fact, any party may, thereafter, file a motion for hearing to determine the disputed factual issues. If a responsive pleading is filed which raises only questions of law, the parties shall follow the procedures set forth in Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 208.3(b).
Rule 3.9A. Preliminary Objections.
Preliminary objections shall be moved for disposition pursuant to Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 208.3(b).
FORMAT AND SERVICE OF LEGAL PAPER BY
PARTIES AND COURT; ELECTRONIC FILING
Rule 4.2A. Citation or Notice to Individuals and Entities.
1. The Bucks County Law Reporter is hereby designated as the legal newspaper and periodical for the publication of legal advertisements and notices required by law, rule, order or decree of court.
2. Every notice or advertisement required by law, rule, order or decree of court in one or more newspapers of general circulation, unless dispensed with by special order of the court, shall also be published in the Bucks County Law Reporter.
Rule 4.7A. Electronic Filing.
(a)(1) Any legal paper permitted to be filed under the Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rules may be filed electronically under the procedures set forth in this rule.
(b)(1) All legal papers to be electronically filed shall be presented in portable document format (''.pdf'').
(b)(2) Legal papers may be submitted to the clerk in a hard copy format. In that event, the clerk shall electronically scan such legal paper into .pdf format and maintain it in that format. Any documents scanned into .pdf format may be returned to the filing party for maintenance pursuant to Pa.O.C. Rule 4.7(c)(3).
(c)(1) All legal papers that are filed electronically shall be filed through the clerk's Electronic Filing System (''Electronic Filing System''). General access to the Electronic Filing System shall be provided through a link to the Orphans' Court appearing on the County of Bucks website at www.buckscounty.org.
(c)(2) Parties who are not attorneys shall register with the Electronic Filing System in order to file legal papers electronically. Registrants shall provide the name, mailing address, e-mail address, phone number, and other identifying information as required by the clerk.
(d)(1) The clerk shall accept credit and debit cards for payment of all filing fees and shall take reasonable steps to ensure payment.
(f)(1) Upon receipt of an electronically filed legal paper, the clerk shall provide the filing party with an acknowledgement, which includes the date and time the legal paper was received by the Electronic Filing System. The clerk shall also provide the filing party with notice that the legal paper was accepted for filing. If the legal paper is not accepted upon presentation for filing or is refused for filing by the Electronic Filing System, the clerk shall immediately notify the party presenting the legal paper for filing the date of presentation, the fact that the document was not accepted or refused for filing by the system, and the reason therefor. All acknowledgements and notices under this subsection will be sent to the e-mail address provided by the filing party.
(f)(2) The clerk shall maintain an electronic copy of all legal papers filed.
Final written approval for implementation of the Electronic Filing System as described within Bucks County Orphans' Court Rule 4.7A shall be issued by the court.
RULES GOVERNING SPECIFIC TYPES
Rule 5.4A. Revocation, Vacating or Extension of Time for Filing of Surviving Spouse's Election.
A petition for the extension of the time in which the surviving spouse may file an election to take against the will shall be presented to the court within the required statutory period after the probate of the will as required by Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 5.4(b). The petition shall set forth the following additional matters:
1. the facts relied upon to justify the extension of time requested and the period of extension desired;
2. the names of the interested parties who have consented to the extension of time as evidenced by their joinder in the petition.
Rule 5.6A. Appointment of a Guardian for the Estate or Person of a Minor.
In lieu of the entry of bond, the court in appropriate cases may authorize the guardian to deposit the funds of the minor in an interest-bearing federally insured savings account, certificate of deposit or credit union account or an account investing only in securities guaranteed by the United States government or a Federal governmental agency managed by responsible financial institutions. The account(s) shall be marked ''not to be withdrawn until the minor reaches the age of eighteen (18) years, except for the payment of local, state and federal income taxes on earnings of the certificate or account or upon further order of the court.'' Evidence of the deposit or investment marked to indicate the restriction, shall be promptly filed with the clerk.
Rule 5.6B. Minor's Estate, Allowances.
When a petition is necessary for an allowance from a minor's estate, the petition shall set forth:
1. the manner of the guardian's appointment and qualification, the dates thereof;
2. the age and residence of the minor, whether his or her parents are living, the name of the person with whom they reside, the name and age of their spouse and children, if any;
3. the value of the minor's estate, real and personal, and net annual income; and receipts from other sources, e.g., Social Security;
4. the circumstances of the minor, whether employed or attending school; if the minor's parents, or other persons charged with the duty of supporting them are living, the financial condition and income of such person and why they cannot, or should not be required to pay the expenses forming the occasion for the requested allowance under their duty to support the minor; and whether there is adequate provision for the support and education of the minor, his or her spouse and children;
5. the date and amount of any previous allowance by the court; and
6. the financial requirements of the minor and his or her family unit, in detail, and the circumstances making such allowance necessary.
Rule 5.8A. Discharge of Fiduciary and Surety.
1. Additional Averments
If the written consent of the surety is not attached as an exhibit, the petition shall aver that notice has been given to the surety, if any, of the date of the intended application for discharge. The petition shall also expressly state whether both the fiduciary and surety or the surety alone is to be discharged.
The petition shall have attached thereto a copy of the schedule of distribution as confirmed, if one has been filed, and original releases or satisfactions of award from the distributees showing full payment of their distributive shares. If such original releases or satisfactions of award have been filed with the clerk, copies may be attached
Rule 5.10A. Public Sale of Real Estate.
1. Personal Representative
When it is required that a personal representative petition the court to sell real property at public sale, the petition, in addition to the requirements of Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 5.10, shall also set forth in separate paragraphs, the following:
(a) the name or other designation of the estate; the date of death; whether the decedent died testate or intestate; date of grant of letters; if a decedent's estate, or testamentary trust, or the date and manner of creation, if another type of fiduciary estate. If the petitioner is other than the fiduciary, include the particulars of the fiduciary required herein, and set forth facts sufficient to satisfy the court of the propriety of entertaining the petition by a petitioner other than the fiduciary;
(b) set forth the reason why the personal representative is not otherwise authorized to sell under the Probate, Estates and Fiduciaries Code; or is not authorized or is denied the power to do so by the will; or that it is desirable that the sale have the effect of a judicial sale, stating the reasons therefor;
(c) the total value of the personal estate for which they are accountable, as shown in the inventory filed and the inheritance tax appraisal made, if any, and also a statement of the total proceeds of any real estate previously sold or otherwise disposed of;
(d) if the fiduciary has been required to give bond or if additional security may be required, waived or requested, a statement of the amount of the bond or bonds filed by them, if any, and the names of the sureties thereon;
(e) the names and relationships of all interested parties; a brief description of the respective interests; whether any of them are minors, incapacitated persons or deceased, and if so the names of their fiduciaries, if any;
(f) the nature and amount of liens or other claims or charges which are not liens;
(g) whether or not there is any known objection by any party in interest to the grant of relief requested;
(h) a full legal description of the subject real estate, together with a recital of the title thereof sufficient to explain the nature and quantum of all interests therein which will or may be affected by the relief requested;
(i) sufficient facts to enable the court to determine that the sale is desirable for the proper administration and distribution of the estate; and
(j) an appropriate request for relief, together with a form of order or decree in accordance therewith.
When it is required that a trustee petition the court to sell real property at public sale, the petition, in addition to the requirements of Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 5.10, shall also set forth in separate paragraphs, the following:
(a) the name and capacity of the trustee, together with the date and manner of their appointment; how title was acquired, stating the date and place of probate of the will, schedule of distribution, or recording of the deed;
(b) a recital of the relevant provisions of the will or deed pertaining to the real property to be sold or of the history of the trust (references to specific paragraphs or pages of the exhibit may be incorporated by reference rather than recite in detail the appropriate section of the document);
(c) the names and relationships of all interested parties; a brief description of their respective interests; whether any of them are minors, incapacitated persons or deceased, and if so, the names of their fiduciaries if any;
(d) the nature and amount of liens or other claims or charges which are not liens;
(e) whether or not there is any objection by any party in interest to the grant of relief requested;
(f) a full legal description of the subject real estate, together with a recital of the title thereof sufficient to explain the nature and quantum of all interests therein which will or may be affected by the relief requested;
(g) the total value of the personal estate for which they are accountable as shown, for example, in the inventory filed (by the will, deed, or schedule of distribution); a statement of the total proceeds of any real estate previously sold or otherwise disposed of;
(h) that the trustee is not authorized to sell under the Probate, Estates and Fiduciaries Code, or is denied the power by the trust instrument; or that it is desirable that the sale have the effect of a judicial sale, stating the reasons therefor;
(i) sufficient facts to enable the court to determine that the proposed sale is for the best interest of the trust; and
(j) an appropriate request for relief together with a form of order or decree in accordance therewith.
When it is required that a guardian petition the court to sell real property at public sale, the petition, in addition to the requirements of Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 5.10, shall set forth in separate paragraphs, the following:
(a) name, date, fiduciary designation and manner of appointment of the guardian. If the petitioner not be the guardian, include the particulars relating to the guardian mentioned above as to the propriety of the court's entertaining the petition and the granting of relief to the petitioner, rather than to the guardian;
(b) the age of the ward and date of birth;
(c) the names of their next of kin and that notice has been given them of the presentation of the petition; when there are no known next of kin who are sui juris to whom notice may be given, public notice may be required as the court shall by special order in each case designate, if appropriate;
(d) how title was acquired, stating the date and place of probate of the will, the schedule of distribution or recording of the deed; together with a recital of the provisions of the will, schedule of distribution or deed relating to the real estate to be sold;
(e) the nature and extent of the interest of the ward, and of other persons, in the real property, whether any of them are minors, incapacitated persons or deceased and, if so, the names of their fiduciaries, if any;
(f) whether or not there is any objection by any party in interest to the grant of the relief requested;
(g) a full legal description of the subject real estate, together with a recital of the title thereof sufficient to explain the nature and quantum of all interests therein which will or may be affected by the relief requested;
(h) that the guardian is not otherwise authorized to sell under the Probate, Estates and Fiduciaries Code, or is denied the power by the instrument appointing them; or that it is desirable that the sale have the effect of a judicial sale, stating the reasons thereof.
(i) sufficient facts to enable the court to determine that the proposed sale will be for the best interest of the ward; and
(j) an appropriate request for relief together with a form of order or decree in accordance therewith.
Rule 5.10B. Joinder and Consent.
The court may act upon such applications forthwith and ex parte if all interested parties join therein or if the court is satisfied that the interests of all parties would be served and protected thereby, or may require notice thereof by citation or otherwise, to be served upon all interested parties before action thereon in such particular cases as it shall, by special order, direct.
Rule 5.10C. Procedure for Public Sale. Security.
Upon the entry of an order authorizing a public sale of real estate pursuant to application by any fiduciary subject to the jurisdiction thereof, the court shall also fix the return day therefor. Such sale shall be advertised in such manner, in such newspapers or other media, and for such length of time as shall be required by law and deemed necessary and proper reasonably and practically to obtain the best price possible under all the circumstances, but in any event public notice of such sale shall be advertised at least once a week for three successive weeks in the Bucks County Law Reporter and in one other newspaper of general circulation in the county prior to the sale, and shall be conspicuously posted on the subject real estate. Notice thereof shall also be given to all interested parties at least 20 days before the sale by personal service or by certified mail to their last known address, unless the same shall have been waived in writing or the court, for cause shown, shall dispense therewith.
On or before the return day, a sworn written return of said sale shall be filed with the clerk setting forth the relevant facts concerning the sale and attaching a copy of the agreement resulting therefrom and due proofs of publication and service of other required notices.
Rule 5.10D. Public Sale. Exhibits.
The following exhibits shall be attached to a petition by a personal representative, trustee or guardian to sell real property at public sale:
1. a copy of the will, deed, or decree by which the fiduciary was appointed;
2. any consents or joinders of interested parties, and the names and a copy of the notice which has been given to those parties who do not consent or join;
3. consent by any mortgagee whose lien would otherwise not be discharged by the sale;
4. agreement of sale;
5. a full legal description of the subject real estate, together with a recital of the title thereof sufficient to explain the nature and quantum of all interests therein which will or may be affected by the relief requested; and
6. any other instrument which may be material to the application for public sale.
Rule 5.11A. Private Sale of Real Property or Options Therefor.
When a personal representative, trustee or guardian requires court approval for a private sale, exchange or option of real estate, in addition to the requirements of Pennsylvania Orphans' Court Rule 5.11, a petition for approval shall comply with requirements of Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules 5.10 A, B and D.
Rule 5.11B. Petition to Fix or Waive Additional Security. Personal Representative. Other Fiduciary.
1. Form of Petition
In a sale of real estate, whether public or private, by a personal representative, or by other fiduciary, without benefit of an order of court directing or authorizing such sale, where they were required to give bond as such personal representative or other fiduciary, they shall present their petition to the court before the proceeds of the sale are paid to them by the purchaser. The petitioner shall comply with Bucks County Orphans' Court Rules 5.10A and B, as applicable, and, in addition shall:
a. attach exhibits required by Bucks County Rule 5.10;
b. attach a full legal description of the subject real estate, together with a recital of the title thereof sufficient to explain the nature and quantum of all interests therein which will or may be affected by the relief requested;
c. include a prayer for an order fixing the amount of additional security or for an order excusing them from filing additional security, as the case may be; and
d. attach an appropriate form of order or decree.
2. Surety on Additional Bond
The surety on any additional bond, except for cause shown, shall be the same as on the original bond. All bonds for additional security shall be filed with the clerk.
Rule 5.12A. Mortgage or Lease of Real Property.
1. Contents of Petition
A petition to mortgage or lease real property by a personal representative, trustee or guardian, shall conform as closely as practicable to the requirements of these Rules with regard to a petition to sell real property at public sale; shall set forth the amount and terms of the proposed mortgage loan or terms of lease; and shall set forth sufficient facts to enable the court to determine whether the proposed mortgage or lease should be approved.
The following exhibits shall be attached to the petition:
a. a copy of the will, deed, or decree by which the fiduciary was appointed;
b. any consents or joinders of interested parties, and the names and a copy of the notice which has been given to those parties who do not consent or join; and
c. other relevant documents—such as mortgage commitment.
The amount of the bond or additional security required to be entered, or the waiver thereof, will be determined by the court in its decree approving the proposed mortgage or lease.
When an order of the court shall require the entry of additional security, the surety thereon, except for cause shown, shall be the same as on the original bond. All bonds for additional security shall be filed with the clerk.
Rule 5.16A. Petition to Settle Wrongful Death and Survival Actions.
For information regarding Petition to Settle Wrongful Death and Survival Actions see Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 2205*(a)—(b).
Rule 5.17A. Petition for Leave to Compromise Minor's Action.
For information regarding Petition for Leave to Compromise Minor's Action see Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 2039(a)*(1).
RULES RELATING TO PRE-HEARING AND
Rule 7.1A. Practice as to Depositions, Discovery, Production of Documents and Perpetuation of Testimony.
1. Leave to take depositions, or to perpetuate testimony, or obtain discovery or the production of documents, may be granted only on petition upon cause shown except upon agreement of counsel.
2. Upon court approval under paragraph 1 of this Rule, discovery shall be governed by Pennsylvania and Bucks County Rules of Civil Procedure.
Rule 7.1B. Pretrial Conference.
In any proceeding, the court, of its own motion or on motion of any party, may direct attorneys for the parties to appear for a conference to consider:
1. the simplification of the issues;
2. the necessity or desirability of amendments to the pleadings;
3. the possibility of obtaining admissions of fact and of documents which avoid unnecessary proof;
4. such other matters as may aid in the disposition of the action.
The court may enter an order reciting the action taken at the conference, the amendments allowed to the pleadings, and the agreements made by the parties as to any of the matters considered, and limiting the issues for trial to those not disposed of by admissions or agreements of the attorneys. Such order when entered shall control the subsequent course of the action unless modified at the trial to prevent manifest injustice.
Rule 7.2A. Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings.
A motion for judgment on the pleadings shall be moved for disposition pursuant to Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 208.3(b).
Rule 7.3A. Motion for Summary Judgment.
A motion for summary judgment shall be moved for disposition pursuant to Bucks County Rule of Civil Procedure 208.3(b).
Rule 8.2A. Motions for Reconsideration.
Upon the filing of a motion for reconsideration, notice shall be provided to the court by simultaneously forwarding a copy of said motion to judge's chambers.
AUDITORS AND MASTERS
Rule 9.1A. Notice of Hearings.
Auditors or masters shall give at least 10 days notice of a scheduled hearing by personal service or by mail to all interested parties of record or to their counsel of record.
Rule 9.2A. Filing of Report.
All auditors' or masters' reports shall be filed with the clerk.
Rule 9.5A. Transcript of Testimony.
In all hearings before auditors or masters, the testimony may be taken by the court stenographer at the expense of the county. Any party desiring a copy may order the same at their own expense; provided, however, that if the stenographer makes an additional charge for taking the testimony by reason of the hearing being held away from the county seat, the additional charge therefor shall be paid by the party or interested parties responsible for the hearing away from the county seat as may be determined by the auditor or master, or the auditor or master may include such additional charge as part of the costs, to be paid as directed with regard to the other costs; but in no event shall such additional charge be paid by the county.
Rule 9.6A. Notice of Filing Report.
Auditors or masters shall on or before the day of filing their reports give notice of the filing of the same personally or by mail to all interested parties of record or to their counsel of record. Proof of notice shall be attached to the report. All auditors' or masters' reports shall be filed with the clerk.
Rule 9.7A. Confirmation of Report.
If no objections are filed within 10 days of the filing thereof, the court may enter a decree confirming the auditor's report or adopting the master's report, unless the court is of the opinion that error has been made. The court may correct minor errors or deficiencies or refuse to enter a decree.
REGISTER OF WILLS
Rule 10.4A. Appeals from the Register of Wills.
1. Appeals from the judicial acts or proceedings of the Register shall bear the caption of this court, and shall be filed with the clerk. A notice of appeal shall be filed concurrently with the Register.
2. The appeal shall be in the form of a petition, setting forth the nature of the proceedings before the Register, the basis for the appeal, the names and addresses of all interested parties and the necessary jurisdictional facts together with a preliminary decree and citation.
3. If the petition sets forth a prima facie case, the court will award a citation directed to all interested parties to show cause why the appeal should not be sustained and the act or decision of the Register set aside.
4. The Register shall certify its record to the clerk, in due course.
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 16-1293. Filed for public inspection July 29, 2016, 9:00 a.m.]
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