Posted: December 4, 2007
Rules of Civil Procedure
URCP 001. General provisions. Amend. Removes electronic filing from the pilot project phase.
URCP 005. Service and filing of pleadings and other papers. Amend. Recognizes electronic service, as well as traditional methods. Permits the judge to require electronic filing.
URCP 010. Form of pleadings and other papers. Amend. Prohibits redundant, immaterial, impertinent or scandalous matter. Makes upper-left corner of document uniform for represented and self-represented parties. Permits but does not require a graphic signature if a document is electronically filed. Includes electronic records within the scope of the rules.
URCP 011. Signing of pleadings, motions, and other papers; representations to court; sanctions. Amend. Permits a self-authenticated statement instead of an affidavit in accordance with Section 46-5-101. Recognizes electronic signatures.
URCP 064D. Writ of garnishment. Amend. To accommodate electronic filing, the amendment allows the creditor to pledge to serve the garnishee’s fee rather than attach it to the filing.
In regard to the revisions to Rule 5, which expressly recognize service by fax and email, there may be a need to explicitly address whether Utah R. Civ. P. 6(e) applies to these newly recognized forms of service. More specifically, as the proposed Rule 5 is currently written, the 3-day “mail rule” in Rule 6(e) would seemingly not apply in instances where parties serve by fax or email. If this accurately reflects the intent underlying the revisions to Rule 5, it may be worth addressing in the Advisory Committee Note to the revised Rule 5. Otherwise, there may be confusion concerning whether the 3-day “mail rule” applies where service is by fax or email.
This is particularly true in light of the Administrative Procedures in the United States District Court for the District of Utah, which expressly state: “the three-day mailing rule will apply whenever a document or pleading is served electronically. (Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 6(e)).” See District of Utah CM/ECF Administrative Procedures Manual ¶ II.H.5 at 12 (Version 05-17-07) available at http://www.utd.uscourts.gov/documents/utahadminproc.pdf (accessed Dec. 4, 2007).
Proposed Rule 10(a)(3) provides for a copy of the complaint cover sheet to be served along with the Summons and Complaint. What is the reason for this requirement? All information on that cover sheet is contained in the Summons and/or Complaint. Serving the cover sheet seems to be totally redundant. The ONLY reason for the cover sheet is to allow the clerk filing the complaint to more easily find the amount of the claim, the type of case it is, and the names of the parties involved. Pro-se defendants, especially, will have no idea what that extra sheet of paper means.
With reference to Proposed Rule 10(a)(3), I concur with Mr. Cawley’s comments. I see no benefit to anyone from the proposed change.