TO: Joint Procedure Committee
FROM: Mike Hagburg
RE: Rule 40, N.D.R.Civ.P., Assignment of Cases for Trial
Mr. Lynn Boughey has proposed an amendment to Rule 40. The amendment would create a new document called a "certificate of readiness for ruling." Attorneys who had filed and finished responding to a motion would file this document to let the judge, and the court administrator, know that the attorneys had finished their work related to the motion and were ready for a ruling from the court.
As the attached letter shows, Mr. Boughey feels the new certificate is needed to prevent motions, particularly post trial motions, from falling through the cracks of the docket currency/case management system. Mr. Boughey believes that the filing of such a certificate would help judges and court administrators know when the docket currency clock should start on a post trial motion.
Court administrator Ted Gladden commented that Mr. Boughey's proposal was cumbersome and unnecessary. Mr Gladden said that the same docket currency principles apply to post trial motions as to other motions, and that such motions are required to be resolved within 90 days. See N.D. Sup. Ct. Admin. R 12 (2)(A)(4) ("Orders disposing of motions must be entered within 90 days of oral argument or the filing of the last brief, whichever is later.") Mr. Gladden said allowing the filing of an addition certificate as proposed by Mr. Boughey would not change the docket currency requirements applicable to motions.
In response, Mr. Boughey stated in an email to staff: "the attorneys of record should have some control as to items being properly placed on the currency dockets standards listings so that motions and other matters do not 'fall through the cracks.' The process I suggested is no more cumbersome than the process we presently use for note of issue and certification of readiness; indeed, I based it on that very process."
Draft amendments to Rule 40 based on Mr. Boughey's suggestions have been prepared and are attached as part of the meeting materials.