Section 1. Declaration of Judicial Emergency-Grounds.
A judicial emergency may be declared to exist if an emergency or natural disaster substantially endangers or infringes upon the normal functioning of the judicial system, the ability of persons to avail themselves of the judicial system, the ability of litigants or others to have access to the courts, or to meet schedules or deadlines imposed by court order or rule, statute, or administrative rule.
Section 2. Declaration of Judicial Emergency-Form and Content.
A declaration of judicial emergency must be made by order of the Supreme Court, or in the absence of a majority of the Supreme Court by the Chief Justice, or if the Chief Justice is absent, a Justice or judge authorized to act under North Dakota Supreme Court Administrative Order 11. The order must state:
(1) the area affected by the order;
(2) the nature of the emergency necessitating the order;
(3) the period or duration of the judicial emergency; and
(4) any other information relevant to the suspension or restoration of court operations. An order issued under this section is effective upon its issuance and may have retroactive effect to the extent specifically provided. The Supreme Court may modify an order declaring a judicial emergency.
Section 3. Declaration of Judicial Emergency-Notice.
Upon the issuance or modification of a judicial emergency order, notice must be given to the state court administrator, the clerk of the Supreme Court, the judges and clerks of the court for the affected area, litigants, attorneys and the public. Notice may be provided by whatever means is reasonably calculated to reach such persons under the circumstances and may, without limitation, include mailing, publication on the internet or in newspapers of local or statewide circulation, posting of written notices at courthouses or other public gathering sites, transmittal by facsimile or e-mail, or announcement on television, radio, or public address systems.
Section 4. Suspension, Extension, or Other Relief From Deadlines, Time Schedules, or Filing Requirements.
An order declaring a judicial emergency, whether in civil, criminal, administrative or any other legal proceedings, as determined necessary, may suspend, toll, extend, or otherwise grant relief from deadlines, time schedules, statutes of limitations, statutes of repose, or filing requirements imposed by otherwise applicable rules, or court orders. An order declaring a judicial emergency may not, under authority of this rule, suspend, toll, extend, or otherwise grant relief from deadlines, time schedules, or filing requirements required by the Constitution of the United States or the Constitution of North Dakota. The days covered by a judicial emergency order are considered a legal holiday for time computation under North Dakota’s court rules.
Section 5. Designation of Alternative Facility for Court Business.
If the emergency or natural disaster makes access to the office of a clerk of court or a courthouse impossible or impractical, the order declaring the judicial emergency may designate another facility, which is reasonably accessible and appropriate, for the business of the court.
Rule 57 was adopted July 1, 2013.
Cross Reference: N.D.C.C. § 27-02-27 (Judicial Emergency); N.D.R.App.P. 26 (Computing and Extending Time); N.D.R.Civ.P. 6 (Computing and Extending Time; Time for Motion Papers); N.D.R.Crim.P. 45 (Computing and Extending Time).