Superior Court Amends Civil Rule Governing Motions Practice

On March 24, 2022, the Superior Court adopted Rule Promulgation Order 22-05, which, among other things, amends Superior Court Civil Rule 12-I, the principal civil rule governing motions practice. The amendment makes three changes to motions practice.

First, the amendment narrows the requirement to seek consent to the relief sought from the other affected parties prior to filing such that the requirement to seek consent now only applies to “nondispositive motions.”  Accordingly, a party may file “a motion to dismiss, a motion for summary judgment, a motion for judgment on the pleadings, or any other motion seeking to dispose of a claim or defense” without seeking consent to the relief sought from the other affected parties. Rule Promulgation Order 22-05 at 3 (Comment to 2022 Amendments).

Second, the amendment eliminates the requirement to file a separate statement of “points and authorities” in support of a motion. As a result, “the motion itself must state with particularity the grounds for seeking” relief. Id.

Third, the amendment allows “replies in support of any motion.” Id. Previously, replies were only allowed as a matter of course in connection with motions for summary judgment, motions to dismiss for failure to state a claim, motions to strike expert testimony, and motions for judgment on the pleadings.