New Rules Set To Take Effect January 1
The Ohio Supreme Court adopted several rule changes in 2014 that take effect on January 1, including provisions affecting e-filing, disciplinary suspensions, and judicial consent to an abortion by a minor.
Rule changes include:
E-Filing - Rule changes allow for electronically filing documents with the Supreme Court. Approved amendments to the Rules of Practice for the e-Filing Portal include:
- Documents received after 5 p.m. Eastern Time through the e-Filing Portal will not be considered for filing until the next business day.
- Documents with more than 300 pages must be submitted as multiple PDF documents instead of one large file.
- E-Filing is optional, however, attorneys who choose to file documents through the portal must register and set up an account.
The e-Filing Portal is scheduled to be available to all attorneys starting on January 5.
Disciplinary Rules - Board of Commissioners on Grievances & Discipline will change its name to the Board of Professional Conduct. Other amendments include:
- Updating terminology relative to mental illness, mental disorders, and substance use disorders to reflect current, accepted medical standards.
- Allowing for the imposition of an interim impairment suspension when a lawyer or judge is suffering from a medically recognized disorder that substantially impairs that individual’s performance of professional duties.
- Adopting a single standard of “confidential” as that term applies to the investigation of grievances; and applying to disciplinary case documents the same standards of public access that are applicable to trial and appellate courts.
Presentation of Attorneys - Starting January 1, attorneys approved for admission without examination will no longer have to participate in the presentation of attorneys during an official session of the Supreme Court. Amendments to Rule I of the Rules for the Government of the Bar of Ohio give these attorneys two additional ways to take the oath: being sworn in by an active Ohio judge or being sworn in by a justice in the highest court in another jurisdiction where they are admitted.
Judicial Consent – Revisions to rules and forms concerning judicial consent to an abortion by a minor without notification of a parent, guardian, or custodian bring them in line with recent legislative changes. Judicial consent is guided by Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio 23-25 and Forms 23-A through 25-A.
- Am. H.B. 63 of the 129th General Assembly required courts to find by “clear and convincing evidence” whether the minor is sufficiently mature and well-enough informed to decide intelligently whether to have an abortion and whether the abortion is in the best interest of the minor. This new evidentiary standard was added to Sup.R. 23.1, Form 23.1-A, and Form 23.1-B.
- Sub. H.B. 247 of the 129th General Assembly eliminated the juvenile’s ability to file the petition or application for an abortion in the juvenile court in the county where the abortion will be performed. This option was deleted from the instructions for and Form 23-A, the instructions for and Form 23.1-A, and the instructions for Forms 24-A and 24-B.
Probate Forms - Amendments to new and existing probate forms include: changes to Form 14 (Application to Approve Settlement and Distribution of Wrongful Death and Survival Claims), new Form 22.5 (Application to Settle a Claim of an Adult Ward), new Form 22.6 (Entry Approving Settlement of a Claim of an Adult Ward), and new Form 22.7 (Report of Distribution).
Emergency Response – Changes to Rule 14 of the Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio provide clarity as to the Chief Justice’s duties and responsibilities during a judicial emergency, and include requiring the Chief Justice to:
- Issue an order declaring a judicial emergency and setting forth basic information such as the name of the affected court or division, a description of the circumstances necessitating the declaration, the duration of the judicial emergency (which is initially limited to 30 days), and any other relevant information.
- File the order declaring a judicial emergency with the Clerk of the Supreme Court and, if possible, the clerk of the affected court or division.
- Consult with the administrative judge and court administrator of the affected court or division prior to taking action during a judicial emergency.
Clients’ Security Fund - The Clients’ Security Fund will be known as the Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection. The name change will not affect other aspects of the fund’s work.
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