Administrative Rule 52 - INTERACTIVE TELEVISION
Section 1. Purpose.
This rule provides a framework for the use of interactive television in North Dakota's district and municipal courts. This rule is intended to enhance the current level of judicial services available within the North Dakota court system through the use interactive television and not in any way to reduce the current level of judicial services.
Section 2. In General.
(A) Subject to the limitations in Sections 3, 4 and 5, a district or municipal court may conduct a proceeding by interactive television on its own motion or on a party's motion.
(B) A party wishing to use interactive television must obtain prior approval from the court after providing notice to other parties.
(C) Parties must coordinate approved interactive television proceedings with the court to facilitate scheduling and ensure equipment compatibility.
(D) Each interactive television site must provide equipment or facilities for confidential attorney-client communication.
(E) A method for electronic transmission of documents must be available at each interactive television site for use in conjunction with an interactive television proceeding.
Section 3. Civil Action.
In a civil action, a district or municipal court may conduct a hearing, conference, or other proceeding, or take testimony, by interactive television.
Section 4. Criminal Action.
(A) In a criminal action, a district or municipal court may conduct a hearing, conference, or other proceeding by interactive television, except as otherwise provided in Section 4 (B).
(1) A defendant may not plead guilty nor be sentenced by interactive television unless the parties consent.
(2) A witness may not testify by interactive television unless the defendant knowingly and voluntarily waives the right to have the witness testify in person.
(3) An attorney for a defendant must be present at the interactive television site where the defendant is located unless the attorney's participation from another location is approved by the court with the consent of the defendant. In a guilty plea proceeding, the court may not allow the defendant's attorney to participate from a site separate from the defendant unless:
(a) the court makes a finding on the record that the attorney's participation from the separate site is necessary;
(b) the court confirms on the record that the defendant has knowingly and voluntarily consented to the attorney's participation from a separate site; and
(c) the court allows confidential attorney-client communication, if requested.
Section 5. Mental Health Proceeding.
(A) In a mental health proceeding, a district court may conduct a proceeding by interactive television and allow the following persons to appear or present testimony:
(1) the respondent or patient;
(2) a witness;
(3) legal counsel for a party.
(B) Notice, Objection, and Waiver.
(1) Notice. Before holding any mental health proceeding by interactive television, the court must give notice to the petitioner and the respondent. The notice must:
(a) advise the parties of their right to object to the use of interactive television;
(b) inform the respondent that the proceedings may be recorded on video and that, if there is an appeal, the video recording may be made part of the appendix on appeal and is part of the record on appeal.
(a) Interactive television may not be used in a mental health proceeding if any party objects. The respondent must be given the opportunity to consult with an attorney about the right to object to the use of interactive television.
(b) If the respondent fails to make an objection or fails to make a timely objection to the use of interactive television, the court may nevertheless continue the proceeding for good cause.
(c) If the proceeding is continued, the respondent will continue to be held at the facility where the respondent was receiving treatment or, at the choice of the treatment provider in a less restrictive setting, until a face-to-face hearing can be completed.
(d) A face-to-face hearing must be scheduled to occur within four days, exclusive of weekends and holidays, of the date the objection was made, unless good cause is shown for holding it at a later time.
(3) Waiver. Upon mutual consent of the parties, and with the approval of the court, notice requirements in a mental health proceeding may be waived to allow for the conduct of proceedings without prior notice or with notice that does not conform to Section 5 (B) (1).
Section 6. Effective Date.
This rule is effective June 1, 2005, and remains in effect until further order of the supreme court.
[Adopted effective May 1, 2005; amended effective June 1, 2005.]