L211

Chapter II

BUSINESS OF COURTS

Rule L211 MOTION COURT AND ORAL ARGUMENT PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE
Motion court shall convene as set forth in the court’s published annual calendar, unless the court’s schedule does not permit. Counsel are encouraged to check with the Office of the District Court Administrator to ensure that motion court will convene on the date and time which counsel has selected to present any matter requiring court review and action. As used in this rule, the term “motion” includes any petition, application, objection, exception, or other title assigned to the matter by the moving party following commencement of the action.

(a) Motions

(1) Requirement of Written Motion
Unless otherwise authorized by the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, all motions shall be in writing.
(2) Uncontested Motions
Uncontested motions, with a proposed order, shall be presented to the Office of the District Court Administrator during the court’s normal business hours. The moving party or counsel shall certify by a certificate attached to the motion that timely written notice to all other parties of the motion, proposed order, and date and time of presentation, have been provided and includes the date and manner of notice, and that the motion is uncontested.
(3) Contested Motions
No contested motion shall be considered by the court unless notice to opposing counsel has been provided in conformity with subdivision (a)(7) of this Rule. The total time for argument of any contested motion shall be limited to 10 minutes, with any party not permitted argument in excess of five (5) minutes. If any party requests the court to review written legal authority, such authority must be presented to the court at the time the motion is presented. If counsel believes that the complexity of the issues presented requires argument in excess of the time limits set forth in this Rule, then counsel shall request that argument of the motion be scheduled separately, in which case the motion shall be presented in accordance with Rule L211(a)(2).
Note: Contested motions requiring more than 10 minutes for argument shall be presented as an uncontested motion for argument and the certification shall include the estimated length of the time required for argument.
(4) Discovery Motions
Any motion relating to discovery must be accompanied by a certificate signed by counsel for the moving party certifying that counsel has conferred telephonically or in person with opposing counsel and any unrepresented party with respect to each matter set forth in the discovery motion and was unable to resolve the differences which exist. The certificate shall set forth the exact time and place of the conference or consultation. Merely attaching a copy of correspondence to opposing counsel requesting compliance to the discovery request or attempting to resolve the matter, or providing opposing counsel with a copy of the discovery motion or informing opposing counsel of the motion to be presented and opposing counsel not objecting to the motion does not comply with this Rule. Where counsel for the moving party cannot furnish the required certificate because opposing counsel has failed to respond or refused to cooperate, counsel shall furnish an alternate certificate stating that opposing counsel has refused to so meet or confer and stating such other facts and circumstances supporting the absence of the required certificate and the moving party’s counsel’s efforts to obtain compliance by opposing counsel.
(5) Ex Parte and Emergency Motions
Ex parte and emergency motions shall not be considered unless the court is satisfied that immediate and substantial injury will be sustained by the moving party before notice can be effectuated. In such a case, the nature of the matter and a description of the immediate and substantial injury, which will be sustained if the notice required under these Rules would be provided, shall be set forth in the motion.
(6) Continuances
Except as otherwise provided in Rule L1304 regarding compulsory arbitration cases, any motion for continuance, whether contested or uncontested, shall be presented to the Office of the District Court Administrator during normal business hours following written notice to all parties.
(7) Notice and Certification
No contested motion or discovery motion may be presented unless counsel for the moving party has certified, by a certificate attached to the motion, that a copy of the motion and written notice of the date and time of presentation were provided to all opposing counsel and unrepresented parties at least two (2) business days before presentation of the motion unless consented to by opposing party or counsel in writing. The certificate shall include the date and manner in which notice was provided. As used in this Rule, written notice shall include a facsimile transmission. The court shall not entertain any motion that does not include a certification, as required by this Rule, and a proposed order. The moving party shall be responsible for serving copies of the motion and any proposed order upon all counsel of record and unrepresented parties. All contested motions and discovery motions served upon opposing counsel and/or unrepresented parties shall include, either in the body of the motion or attached to the motion, all written legal authority upon which the moving party relies in support of the motion.
(8) Form of Certificate of Notice
(i) The form of certificate for an uncontested motion shall be substantially in the form provided in Appendix A to this rule.
(ii) The form of certificate for a contested motion shall be substantially in the form provided in Appendix B to this rule.
(iii) The form of certificate for a discovery motion shall be substantially in the form provided in Appendix C to this rule.
(9) Proposed Court Orders
All motions shall include a proposed order, which shall contain the following language:
“The Prothonotary shall be responsible for properly serving a copy of this order upon all counsel of record and unrepresented parties to this action, in accordance with Pa.R.C.P. No. 236 and Rule L236.”
(10) Hearing, Argument, and Conference Dates
Motions requesting dates for a proceeding shall comply with the requirements of this Rule. The moving party shall also include in the motion the estimated time required for the proceeding. The estimated time shall be determined only after consultation with opposing counsel, and the moving party shall specify the date, time and manner of consultation in any motion requesting a date for a proceeding.
(11) Nonconforming Motions
The court shall not act upon any motion which does not conform with the provisions of this Rule.

(b) Oral Argument

(1) Pretrial and post-trial motions subject to this Rule include preliminary objections, motions for judgment on the pleadings, motions for summary judgment, motions for post-trial relief, and any other motion in which the disposition thereof may result in an appealable order.

(2) The court shall schedule oral argument only upon praecipe filed with the prothonotary, with a copy of the face sheet served on the District Court Administrator in accordance with the following schedule:
(i) If the moving party desires oral argument, the moving party shall file a Praecipe for argument concurrently with the filing of the motion, at which time the District Court Administrator shall forward the praecipe to the court, which shall schedule argument;
(ii) If the moving party fails to file a praecipe for argument, the non-moving party may file a praecipe for argument within 10 days of being served with the motion, at which time the District Court Administrator shall forward the praecipe to the court, which shall schedule argument;
(iii) Upon the court scheduling oral argument in accordance with Rule L211(b)(2)(i) or Rule L211 (b)(2)(ii), the court shall include a briefing schedule in its order.
(iv) If neither party timely files a praecipe for argument, the moving party shall file a praecipe for disposition on written briefs alone and notify the court by providing a copy of the praecipe to the District Court Administrator. The praecipe shall be forwarded to the court, which shall then enter an order setting forth a briefing schedule and dispose of the motion solely upon written briefs.

(3) At any time prior to the scheduled argument, the parties, by stipulation, may file with the court a praecipe to submit resolution of the motion upon written briefs alone and provide a copy of the praecipe to the District Court Administrator. The praecipe shall state the date and time of the scheduled argument. The praecipe shall be forwarded to the court, which shall then cancel the scheduled argument and dispose of the motion solely upon written briefs.

(4) When a case is called for argument, if the moving party is not ready to proceed or has not filed a brief, the relief requested by the moving party may be denied as of course. If the non-moving party is not ready to proceed or has not filed a brief, the moving party may proceed with the argument ex parte.

APPENDIX A

CERTIFICATE OF NOTICE
Click here to view or print

APPENDIX B

CERTIFICATE OF NOTICE
Click here to view or print

APPENDIX C

CERTIFICATE OF NOTICE
Click here to view or print