The Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure and its five advisory committees invite public input on possible rule amendments that could ameliorate future national emergencies’ effects on court operations. Congress has directed the Judicial Conference and the Supreme Court to consider such amendments in light of the COVID pandemic. [Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act of 2020, Pub. L. No. 116-136, § 15002(b)(6)]. As a result, the advisory committees for the appellate, bankruptcy, civil, criminal, and evidence rules are considering whether rule amendments are needed to deal with future emergencies.
The committees seek input on challenges encountered during the COVID pandemic in state and federal courts, by lawyers, judges, parties, or the public, and on solutions developed to deal with those challenges. The committees are particularly interested in hearing about situations that could not be addressed through the existing rules or in which the rules themselves interfered with practical solutions.
Suggestions should be sent to RulesCommittee_Secretary@ao.uscourts.gov (link sends e-mail). Because the rules committees are moving forward quickly, responses are requested by June 1, 2020.