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Rules of Practice and Procedure

Rules of Practice and Procedure


The Federal Judicial Center offers many educational resources on the Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure: Appellate Procedure, Bankruptcy Procedure, Civil Procedure, Criminal Procedure, and Evidence. In addition, the Center’s Research Division has long provided the Judicial Conference’s rules committees with empirical and analytical research reports that inform the committees’ policy considerations.
     Additional information on rules and the rulemaking process is presented by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, including information about pending amendments.

Recent Resources

Local-Counsel Requirements for Practice in Federal District Courts
Tim Reagan
2024, 44 pages
This report, which was prepared for the standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure’s subcommittee on attorney admissions, summarizes when and where federal district courts require local counsel to participate in litigation and attorney admissions to the district courts’ bars.

Fees for Admission to Federal Court Bars
Tim Reagan
2024, 55 pages
This report, which was prepared for the standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure’s subcommittee on attorney admissions, summarizes fees charged for admission to federal court bars, including admission fees, pro hac vice fees, and fees charged by state and territory bars for certificates of good standing.

Jurisdictions with a High Number of Civil Jury Trials
Emery G. Lee III and Kristin A. Garri
2023, 64 pages
This report fulfills the Center’s requirement under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2022 (Pub. L. No. 117-103), to submit a report to the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations “identifying jurisdictions that have a high number of civil jury trials and analyze whether the litigation practices, local court rules, or other factors in those jurisdictions may contribute to a higher incidence of civil jury trials.”

Mandatory Initial Discovery Pilot (MIDP)—Final Report
Emery G. Lee III and Jason A. Cantone
2022, 195 pages
This study presents findings related to the Mandatory Initial Discovery Pilot (MIDP) project in new civil cases initiated in district courts. The Center conducted the study at the request of the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules.

Federal Courts’ Electronic Filing by Pro Se Litigants
Tim Reagan, Carly Giffin, and Roy Germano
2022, 79 pages
From research on pro se use of the federal courts’ Case Management/Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) system, we learned that (1) perhaps paper filers should not be required to separately serve parties already receiving electronic service; and (2) perhaps the rules should clarify references to electronic filing, which sometimes means using CM/ECF and sometimes means otherwise submitting filings electronically, as by email.

Electronic Filing Times in Federal Courts
Tim Reagan, Carly Giffin, Jessica Snowden, George Cort, Jana Laks, Roy Germano, Marie Leary, Saroja Koneru, Jasmine Elmasry, Nafeesah Attah, Rachel Palmer, Annmarie Khairalla, and Danielle Rich
2022, 2,577 pages
The Judicial Conference’s standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure requested research on electronic filing practices as it considered whether a filing should be made at some hour earlier than midnight on the day that it is due. This report charts the filing times for all docket entries made in 200 federal courts in 2018 by court and filer type, with additional charts on motions and responses. Also described are court hours and drop boxes.

Electronic Filing in State Courts
Marie Leary and Jana Laks
2022, 170 pages
This report presents the results of an analysis of electronic filing practices in state courts to identify courts that require attorneys to complete electronic filings on the due date before a certain time other than midnight local time. We examined state-court systems in thirty states, chosen to include at least half of the states that comprise each of the eleven federal numbered circuits. An appendix includes rule excerpts.