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Rule change would make pretrial orders easier

Judges would lose a troublesome hurdle to entering their own pretrial scheduling orders under a rule change up for comment at the Supreme Court of Virginia.

The court’s rules advisory committee is requesting comments from the public, the bench and the bar on proposed revisions to Rule 1:18 governing pretrial scheduling orders in civil cases.

The rule currently requires a judge to give two weeks notice to lawyers before entering the Uniform Pretrial Scheduling Order prescribed in the rules. The change would instead allow the trial judge to enter the order at any time, subject only to the requirement for a later hearing if any party objects or requests a modification.

The change removes what a Boyd-Graves study committee called an “awkward and time-consuming procedure” and still allows lawyers to submit agreed orders on their own and to be heard on objections or changes to any pretrial order.

Comments should be submitted by July 30 by email or snail mail.

Email comments should carry the subject line: “comment on proposed revision of Rule 1:18” and be directed to:
[email protected]

The postal address is:

Advisory Committee on Rules of Court
c/o Steven Dalle Mura
Office of the Executive Secretary
Supreme Court of Virginia
100 North Ninth St.
Richmond, VA 23219


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