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Invitation for Comment on Emergency Rulemaking

Request for Input on Possible Emergency Procedures

The Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure and its five advisory committees invited public input on possible rule amendments that could ameliorate future national emergencies’ effects on court operations. Congress 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 sought input on challenges encountered during the COVID pandemic in state and federal courts, from lawyers, judges, parties, or the public, and on solutions developed to deal with those challenges. The committees were 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. 

The deadline for submitting comments was June 1. Substantive comments are posted below with personal information beyond the name of the submitter – such as physical address, email, and phone – redacted for privacy.

Read the chart listing the individual comments received by subject matter (pdf).

Find the corresponding comments by category:

Based on comments from the bench, bar, and general public, the Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure and its five advisory committees on appellate, bankruptcy, civil, criminal, and evidence rules will determine whether to transmit amendments to the Judicial Conference for potential adoption by the Supreme Court and Congress.