Fall 2001, pg. 231. Advisory Committee Notes to Amendments.

Maine Bar Journal


Fall 2001, pg. 231.

Advisory Committee Notes to Amendments

Maine Bar JournalFall 2001Advisory Committee Notes to AmendmentsAdvisory Committee Notes to Amendments to the Maine Rules of Civil Procedure to Implement ADR1. Subsection 1 amends Rule 16(a) to add an ADR scheduling component to the scheduling order which the court now issues under Rule 16(a). The scheduling order specifies the time within which the ADR conference has to be scheduled and completed. As with other aspects of the 16(a) scheduling order, the dates for scheduling and completion of the ADR conference may be adjusted by the court for good cause shown. The scheduling order would reference Rule 16B for implementation procedures.

  1. Subsection 2 amends the rules to adopt a new Rule 16B generally covering the ADR processes.

    Subsection (a) directs all parties to civil actions either filed in the Superior Court or removed from the District Court to the Superior Court, except exempt actions, (i) to schedule an ADR conference within either 60 days of the date of the Rule 16(a) scheduling order; and (ii) to hold that ADR conference within one hundred and twenty days of the same date.

    The time limits in Rule 16B(a) are subject to M.R. Civ. P. 6(b) which allows the court to enlarge a time limit "for cause shown." See also M.R. Civ. P. 16(a) (allowing scheduling order modification "for good cause shown").

    Subsection (b) exempts from the ADR requirements:

  2. Divorce, Forcible Entry and Detainer, [Civil Violations,] and Small Claims Actions.

  3. 80B and 80C appeals.

  4. State tax assessors appeals. Even though these actions are "de novo," 36 M.R.S.A. § 151, in fact they have been through an extensive discussion process. Further, most of these matters that do get to Superior Court are resolved on stipulations or cross-motions for summary judgment. Considering that the Superior Court often does not get these actions until they have been in the administrative process for three or four years, an additional ADR component would not appear to be productive.

  5. Actions for recovery of personal injury damages where the plaintiff requests exemption and certifies that the likely recovery will not exceed $30,000. This exemption addresses the concern of many trial lawyers that adding an ADR process may unacceptably increase the cost of prosecuting cases where relatively small damages and fees may be recovered. The exemption must be initiated by the plaintiff who thus could choose ADR by not seeking exemption. The choice is limited to the plaintiff, as it is the plaintiff's potential recovery and any resulting contingent fee that may be most impacted by ADR-related cost increases.

    The certification should be a good-faith estimate by the plaintiff at the time it is filed that...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT