The Arkansas Supreme Court delivered a per curiam opinion on March 3, 2011, in which the Court announced proposed changes to rules of procedure affecting civil practice. See In Re Arkansas Rules of Civil Procedure and Rules of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, 2011 Ark. 99.
The following rule changes to the Arkansas Rules of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals were proposed by the Arkansas Supreme Court Committee on Civil Practice and are being suggested by the Arkansas Supreme Court:
- Rule 2-1. Motions, general rules—The change would require that motions filed in the appellate courts comply with the style of appellate court briefs. Currently the rules governing the style of briefs are more specific than the rules governing the styles of motions. Based on this rule change, motions would be required to be in 14-point font, among other things.
- Rule 4-1. Style of briefs—This change would increase the page numbers in the Appellant’s reply brief from 15 to 20 pages. When the Court previously changed Rule 4-1 to require 14-point font to be used in briefs filed in appellate courts, the number of pages for the appellant’s brief and the appellee’s brief was increased by 5 pages. This rule change would also add an additional 5 pages to the reply brief.
- Rule 4-2. Contents of briefs—The statement of the case would increase from a maximum of 5 to a maximum of 6 pages. This change is also in response to the previous increase in the font size of appellate court briefs from 12 to 14 point font.
- Rule 6-7. Taxation of costs—This change would increase the total costs for the filing fee that is recoverable by the prevailing party to $165. This change would reflect the actual cost of filing an appeal in the appellate courts (to include the addition of the $15 technology fee that was previously added to each filing fee).
- Rule 6-9. Rules for appeals in dependency-neglect cases—This amendment would add a motion to intervene in dependency-neglect proceedings to the list of appealable orders under the expedited appeal procedure of Rule 6-9.
If you wish to comment on these proposed rule changes, make your comments in writing before May 1, 2011, to: Leslie W. Steen, Clerk, Supreme Court of Arkansas, Attn.: Civil Procedure Rules, Justice Building, 625 Marshall Street, Little Rock, Arkansas 72201.