||Rory Perry's Weblog
Law, technology, and the courts
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Recent rules activity - Mass Litigation Panel; changes to Rule 3(a) of the Rules of Civil Procedure
On October 9, 2008, the Court approved four rule changes related to mass litigation that become effective immediately. Those changes are:
- Amendments to Trial Court Rule 26: These amendments relate to the Mass Litigation Panel, referral of cases, and conduct of business before the Panel, among other changes. An engrossed version of TCR 26 is also available.
- New Trial Court Rule 15: This is a new rule that will allow the implementation of electronic filing and service in cases referred to the Mass Litigation Panel under Trial Court Rule 26. Electronic filing and service will not be used to initiate cases, and implementation will be triggered by entry of an order by the Panel (See TCR 15.02).
- Amendment to Trial Court Rule 16.05(a): This amendment adds mass litigation to a list of exceptions from time standards otherwise applicable in civil litigation.
- Amendment to Rule of Civil Procedure 5(e): This amendment enables electronic filing and service for post-complaint filings, following the model used to enable filing by facsimile.
In addition, the Court approved an amendment to Rule of Civil Procedure 3(a) that becomes effective on November 10, 2008. The amendment adds a second sentence to the existing rule, as follows: "(a) Complaint. [~] A civil action is commenced by filing a complaint with the court. For a complaint naming more than one individual plaintiff not related by marriage, a derivative or fiduciary relationship, each plaintiff shall be assigned a separate civil action number and be docketed as a separate civil action and be charged a separate fee by the clerk of a circuit court." For additional background on this rule, see syllabus points 3 and 4 of CABLE v. HATFIELD, 202 W.Va. 638, 505 S.E.2nd 701 (Davis, C.J.)(July 7, 1998). 10:10:44 AM [Permanent Link]
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