California Rules of Court (January 2018)

It’s that wonderful time of year again for legal personnel to update their filing calendars to reflect the court’s latest changes to existing statutes and rules. I will give you the broad strokes momentarily, but you can download the full update of Amendments to the California Rules of Court here as adopted by the Judicial Council on November 17, 2017 and effective as of January 1, 2018.

California eFiling deadlines (.pdf)

1 — Latest eFiling & eService deadlines

The current rule 2.250(b)(10) had a close of business definition that entailed that any eFiled documents submitted after the court stopped accepting them at the counter would be filed on the next business day but under the amended statute, CCP 1010.6(b)(3), docs that are eFiled between 12:00AM and 11:59PM are considered filed that same day.

2 — Images of signatures not required and eSignatures will eventually be permitted

Rule 2.257 had been interpreted as requiring a scanned image of an ink signature on signed documents that are filed with the court but this latest revision eliminates confusion and specifically allows for electronic signatures, once the Judicial Council publishes those guidelines, that is. It has until December 31, 2018, so keep an eye out for that particular update in the future.

3 — Document defined

The definition of a document includes a notice, order, judgment or other issuance by the court. Rule 2.250(b)1) & (2) were amended to include other person within the definition of a document.

4 — Electronic service required by court order additional provisions

A new subdivision (d) was added to Rule 2.251 regarding electronic service via court order. You would be wise to read through the addendum and so rather than forcing you to slog through the court’s spectacularly unnumbered forty-two page update to find it, I have taken the time to extract the page in question for you to view here.

5 — Fee waiver application for electronic submissions

Rule 2.252(f) has been amended to require courts to permit applications for fee waivers that are electronically filed. This rule is essentially the same as CCP 1010.6(b)(6).

6- eService address clarification

Updated rule 2.256(a)(4) includes a restriction as follows:

This applies only when the electronic filer has consented to or is required to accept electronic service.

Because in pro per electronic filers are exempted from having to consent to the eService clause of rule 2.251(b)(1)(B), they do not have to provide an eService address like other filers do. The amended rule clarifies which eFilers are obligated to furnish an eService address accordingly.

County Rule Changes

Naturally, not all California counties have chosen to make changes to their rules this time round so following are the ones that did.

Alameda

Rule 1.9 amended and removed from the Alameda courthouse from locations in which CV and FL case types can be filed.

Fresno

Rule 4.1.13(B) was added to allow for eFiling of charging documents (complaints) in criminal cases. Subsection ( C ) was amended to change requests to requires as it relates to PDF-searchable and bookmarked docs electronically submitted.

Humboldt

Rule 2.11 was deleted and in doing so the requirement for providing courtesy copies for motions has been removed.

Mendocino

Rules 3.1, 3.6 & 3.8 have been added as follows:

  • New rule 3.1 modifies existing file anywhere rule to one that requires filing the case initiation in the proper venue first then filing subsequent docs anywhere with some exceptions. (See also 3.1(a)(2) & ( c )(2)).
  • New rule 3.6 adds a requirement to provide courtesy copies on any motions or orders. There is an option to provide copies via email or Dropbox.
  • New rule 3.8 adds a drop box in Ukiah county.

Napa

Rule 3.3 will be modified to require courtesy copies of all eFiled docs over fifteen (15) pages long.

San Bernadino

Rule 1800, Electronic Filing, will be simplified to point filers to CCP 1010.6 & CRC 2.250 et. seq. for eFiling requirements. rule 1810, Electronic Filing Participation will be deleted and reserved. Essentially, the court is preparing to address eFiling with CV case types expected to go live in 2020 which seems so far away but is in reality, only two (2) short years from now.

San Diego

Family Law Rule 5.1.2 bill will be added to define what an imaged case is in Family Law. Rule 5.1.9 will require, among other items, an imaged file under the case number. This is in anticipation for the court going live with eFiling in FL case types which is expected to occur later in the year, however, this is only a guesstimate.

Until July, this concludes all pertinent rule changes for the year.

Happy filing to you!

***

Disclaimer

Use of the information found within this article does not constitute legal advice nor does the writer make any claims and/or guarantees as to timeliness of the material. At the time of publication, filing deadlines were accurate, however, as a best practice, you should ALWAYS double-check your local court rules to ensure accuracy.

***

SOURCES: