TO: Joint Procedure Committee
FROM: Andy Forward
DATE: March 30, 2010
RE: Rule 56, N.D.R.Civ.P., Summary Judgment
Staff has prepared amendments to Rule 56 based on the time computation amendments made to the federal rules. The principal simplifying innovation is to count all days, including intermediate weekends and holidays, in computing time periods under the procedural rules. Under the previous rules, intermediate weekends and holidays were omitted when computing short periods but included when computing longer periods. Under the amended rules, intermediate weekends and holidays are counted regardless of the length of the specified period.
To further simplify time-counting, the federal advisory committees proposed changing most periods of less than 30 days to multiples of 7 days. The advisory committees adopted 7, 14, 21, and 28-day periods when possible, so that deadlines will usually fall on weekdays.
In paragraph (a)(1), line 11, the time period to move for summary judgment was increased from 20 to 21 days after commencement of the action.
In the federal rule, the timing provisions in subdivisions (a) and (c) are replaced by new provisions that recognize authority to set deadlines for summary judgment motions by local rule or by court order and, in default of a local rule or court order, that allow a motion to be made at any time until 30 days after the close of all discovery. The new provisions also establish default times for response and reply. The Committee may wish to amend the North Dakota rule to adopt these changes.
The proposed amendments to Rule 56 are attached. The proposed amendments are highlighted. Federal Rule 56 is also attached.