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D.C. Superior Court Approves Multiple Rules Amendments

November 21, 2022

On November 18 the Board of Judges of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia issued a series of promulgation orders approving amendments to Rules of Civil Procedure 5, 6, 37, and 43; Rule of Criminal Procedure 43; Juvenile Proceedings Rules 9 and 43; and Domestic Relations Rule 43.

In Promulgation Order 22-10, amendments to Rule 5(d) clarify that discovery materials must not be filed except in the circumstances specified in the rule. Revised Rule 6 now reflects that District of Columbia Emancipation Day and Juneteenth are legal holidays. Rule 37 subsections (c)(A)–(c)(D) have been corrected to redesignate them as subsections (c)(1)–(c)(4), respectively, to conform with the general restyling of the Superior Court rules. Changes to Rule 43(b) eliminate the requirement that a party seeking to present live testimony from a remote location establish “compelling circumstances.”
Promulgation Order 22-11 expands the court’s authority to permit a defendant to appear remotely. The amended Rule of Criminal Procedure 43 also clarifies when a defendant must be physically present, when a defendant may participate remotely, and when a proceeding may occur in a defendant’s absence.

In Promulgation Order 22-12, Juvenile Proceedings Rule 9 has been amended to authorize alternative methods of service if, upon motion, the court makes the appropriate determination. Revised Rule 43 expands the Superior Court’s authority to permit a respondent to appear by video or telephone conferencing.

Finally, Promulgation Order 22-13 states that amended Domestic Relations Rule 43 subsection (b) facilitates remote testimony by eliminating the requirement that a party seeking to present live testimony from a remote location establish “compelling circumstances.”

All of the amendments take effect immediately and govern all succeeding proceedings and insofar is just and practicable in all pending proceedings.

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