Author: Utah Courts

Code of Judicial Administration – Comment Period Closes August 11, 2022

CJA04-0206. Exhibits. (Amend). For clarification purposes, “biological evidence” has been added to the non-exhaustive list of exhibits that will remain in the custody of parties during trial and a reference to Title 53, Chapter 20, Forensic Biological Evidence Preservation, has been added to paragraph (5) to draw parties’ attention to their responsibilities regarding disposal of biological evidence.

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Code of Judicial Administration – Comment Period Closes July 15, 2022

The following rules are approved for a 45-day public comment period.

CJA04-020.03. Records access. (AMEND). Allows a petitioner in an expunged case to obtain a certified copy of the expungement order and case history upon request and in-person presentation of positive identification. This mirrors the process for adoptive parents in obtaining a certified copy of the adoption decree.

CJA06-0501. Reporting requirements for guardians and conservators. (AMEND). Incorporates changes related to H.B. 320 (Guardianship Bill of Rights), streamlines and clarifies exceptions to reporting requirements, outlines procedures and timelines for approval of and objection to reports, and requires the use of a Judicial Council-approved cover sheet and report forms that are substantially the same as Judicial Council-approved forms.

The following rules will go into effect May 23, 2022. Pursuant to CJA Rule 2-205, Expedited rulemaking procedure, the rules are subject to a 45-day comment period. 

CJA04-0508.  Guidelines for ruling on a motion to waive fees. (AMEND). The proposed amendments are in response to S.B. 87, effective May 4, 2022. Among other things, SB 87 amends provisions regarding affidavits of indigency and requires a court to find an individual indigent under certain circumstances.

CJA01-0204. Executive committees. (AMEND).

CJA01-0205. Standing and Ad Hoc Committees. (AMEND).

Creates a Standing Committee on Working Interdisciplinary Network of Guardianship Stakeholders (WINGS). Renames the Policy and Planning Committee to the “Policy, Planning, and Technology Committee.” In addition to its current responsibilities, the committee will now review and recommend technology policies and priorities. The Standing Technology Committee is dissolved.

The following rule will go into effect July 1, 2022. Pursuant to CJA Rule 2-205, Expedited rulemaking procedure, the rule is subject to a 45-day comment period. 

CJA09-0109. Presiding Judges. (AMEND). Simplifies the leadership structure of justice courts and addresses the compensation disparity related to presiding and associate presiding judges by eliminating the position of Education Director. The Associate Presiding Judge will assume education duties.

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Rules of Appellate Procedure – Comment Period Closed June 19, 2022

The Committee proposes amending the listed rules to (1) add “or declaration” any time affidavit is mentioned; (2) add an Advisory Committee Note explaining that the term “declaration” refers to the unsworn declaration described in Title 78b, Chapter 18a, Uniform Unsworn Declarations Act; (3) move the reference to the statute in Rule 37 to an Advisory Committee Note so the rules will be consistent; and (4) remove language in Rules 8 and 17 regarding other sworn statements.

URAP008. Stay or injunction pending appeal. 

URAP017.  Stay pending review. 

URAP023B. Motion to remand for findings necessary to determination of ineffective assistance of counsel claim. 

URAP029. Oral argument. 

URAP037. Suggestion of mootness; voluntary dismissal. 


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Rules of Civil Procedure – Comment Period Closed May 22, 2022

URCP026.01. Disclosure and discovery in domestic relations actions. AMEND. There was a potential for ambiguity between the deadlines stated in URCP 26 and 26.1 for service of initial disclosures in domestic relations actions. The change to the first line in part (b) provides clarification.

URCP076.  Notice of contact information change. AMEND. Further change to the last amendment adding “or other court order” to the last line after protective order and stalking injunction.

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Rules of Professional Practice – Comment Period Closed May 12, 2022

RPP11-0581. Sanctions. Amend. Clarifies that if a lawyer is placed on probation the status of probation is public, but the terms of their probation may be private. 

RPP11-0582. Factors to be considered in imposing sanctions. Amend. This amendment requires the factfinder to consider the presumptive sanctions set forth in the rules, along with any mitigating and aggravating factors. This amendment also adds a section to provide guidance when multiple instances of misconduct are found.

RPP11-0583. Imposition of sanctions. Repeal/Replace with New Rules. This amendment repeals existing rule 11-583 addressing appropriate sanctions and replaces it with four new rules (rules 11-583 through 11-586) that set forth presumptive sanctions based on the nature of the duty violated.
RPP11-0583. Presumptive sanctions for violating duties owed to clients. New. This new rule provides presumptive sanctions to be imposed upon finding that the lawyer violated duties owed to clients, including candor, competence, diligence, conflicts of interest, and failing to preserve a client’s property and confidence.
RPP11-0584. Presumptive sanctions for violating duties owed to the public. New.  This new rule provides presumptive sanctions to be imposed upon finding that the lawyer failed to maintain personal integrity, generally, by committing a criminal act. Additionally, this new rule provides presumptive sanctions for violations of Rule 3.8, Special responsibilities of a prosecutor.
RPP11-0585. Presumptive sanctions for violating duties owed to the legal system. New. This new rule provides presumptive sanctions to be imposed upon finding that the lawyer has engaged in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice. This rule relates to deceit, fraud, misrepresentation, improper communication with individuals in the legal system, and abuse of the legal process.
RPP11-0586. Presumptive sanctions for violating duties owed as a member of the legal profession. New.  This new rule provides presumptive sanctions to be imposed upon finding that the lawyer has engaged in conduct involving misleading communications about a lawyer or a lawyer’s services, unreasonable or improper fees, unauthorized practice of law, failure to report professional misconduct, and failure to respond to a lawful request from disciplinary authority.
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Rules of Appellate Procedure – Comment Period Closed May 7, 2022

URAP014. Review of administrative orders: how obtained; intervention. Amend

The Advisory Committee on the Rules of Appellate Procedure recommends amending Rule 14, which addresses review of administrative orders, to allow parties to file a cross-petition when a petition for review is filed by another party. The proposal responds to the Utah Court of Appeals’ observation that allowing cross-petitions in administrative appeals would further judicial efficiency. See Watson v. Lab. Comm’n, 2020 UT App 170, ¶1 n.1, 480 P.3d 353.

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Rules Governing the Utah State Bar – Comment Period Closed May 7, 2022

USB14-0701. Definitions. AMEND. 

  • In acknowledging the remote work environment created by the pandemic, amendments remove the requirement that “active practice” activities be performed in the jurisdiction in which the applicant is admitted.
  • Amendments also remove teaching full-time at an approved law school as an “active practice” activity in favor of creating an exception for this type of work under Rule 14-705, which is the admission by motion rule.

USB14-0705. Admission by motion. AMEND.

  • Amendments remove geographic restrictions for purposes of counting years of practice toward admission by motion requirements.
  • Amendments allow time in Utah to count toward time practicing in another jurisdiction so long as the lawyer has complied with Rule 5.5 of the Utah Rules of Professional Conduct.
  • Amendments reduce the amount of time a lawyer must have practiced in another jurisdiction from 60 months to 36 months.
  • Amendments also exempt full-time Utah law professors from the requirement of being engaged in the active full-time practice of law for the relevant time period, so long as they have worked at least 80 hours per month as a law professor during that time.

USB14-0712. Qualifications for admission based on UBE. AMEND.

  • Paragraph (c)(2) currently provides that a UBE score may be transferred up to 5 years after exam administration if the attorney applicant can prove that they have practiced for at least 2 ½ years.
  • Repeal of paragraph (c)(2) would bring the rule in line with Rule 14-705 amendments by funneling such applicants through the admission by motion process rather than the UBE score transfer process.

USB14-0809. Practice Pending Admission. AMEND.

  • Amendments to paragraph (c)(3) conform to Rule 14-705 amendments regarding geographic restrictions and time spent practicing.
  • Amendments also expand practice eligibility:
    • from one year to eighteen months after certificate issuance, and
    • from one failed Bar exam attempt to two failed Bar exam attempts.

USB14-0807. Law school student and law school graduate legal assistance. AMEND. 

  • Amendments extend law school graduate practice eligibility:
    • from one year to eighteen months after graduation, and
    • from one failed Bar exam attempt to two failed Bar exam attempts.
  • Amendments also fix a number of formatting issues, simplify language, and add headings for easier application.
  • New paragraph (g)(3)(G) provides that if a 14-807 practitioner substantially aids in the preparation of written materials in an appellate case, including briefs and memoranda, the supervising attorney may, at the attorney’s discretion, credit the 14-807 practitioner by including the practitioner’s name on the filing below the supervising attorney’s name.
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Rules of Civil Procedure – Comment Period Closed April 30, 2022

URCP004. Process. AMEND. Based upon the regular practice with default judgments the Committee is proposing a change of the word “will” to “may” in subsection (c)(1)(E).  The rule would then read that a “judgment by default may be entered against the defendant.”

URCP041.  Dismissal of actions. AMEND. The issue of dismissing an action as to a particular party was brought to the Committee.  The example posed included a multi-defendant case where a settlement agreement may have been reached as to some, but not all defendants, and the plaintiff sought to dismiss the action as to those particular defendants, but not all of the defendants.  Rule 41 currently addresses the dismissal of an “action.”  The Committee is proposing a change to subsections (a)(1)(A) and (a)(2) that would permit a plaintiff to dismiss an action “or any party or portion thereof.”

URCP042. Consolidation; separate trials; venue transfer. AMEND. A change is being proposed to (a)(3) from the word “new” to “single,” because procedurally clerks do not issue a new case number to cases that have been consolidated, rather the case is moved under one case number already in existence.

URCP043. Evidence. AMEND. Changes to the language of the remote hearing oath outlined in subsection (c) to remove the language “issue (or matter) pending between ___ and ___” to be replaced by the word “matter.”  Particularly for cases in juvenile court where the caption is “State of Utah in the interest of …” the language in the oath is more encompassing if read “evidence you shall give in this matter” when administering the oath.

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