This. Changes. Everything. (Actually, it Changes a Few Rules)

By Robyn Hagan Cain on August 17, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

To quote Macauley Culkin as Kevin McCallister in Home Alone, "This is it. Don't get scared now."

Really. There's no reason to get scared: We're just talking about proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure.

The Judicial Conference of the U.S. Advisory Committees on Appellate, Bankruptcy, Criminal, and Evidence Rules have proposed amendments to their respective rules and forms, and requested that the proposals be circulated for comment. This week, the public comment period opened for several proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure, which govern litigation in the federal courts. The comment period closes February 15, 2013.

The amendments propose changes to the following rules:

  • Appellate Rule 6
  • Bankruptcy Rules 1014, 7004, 7008, 7012, 7016, 7054, 8001-8028, 9023, 9024, 9027, and 9033, and Official Forms 9033, and Official Forms 9033, and Official Forms
  • Criminal Rules 5 and 58
  • Evidence Rules 801 and 803

The Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedures says that all comments -- favorable, adverse, or otherwise -- will be carefully considered by the rules committees. Just keep in mind that comments are publicly available because they are part of the official record.

(Links to the comments on the proposed amendments are already available on the U.S. Courts website, though no comments had been reproduced on the website at the time this post was published.)

Comments concerning the proposed amendments may be submitted electronically to or in hard copy to: Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure, Administrative Office of the United States Courts, Suite 7-240, Washington, D.C., 20544.

If "commenting on a proposed federal rule change" is on your bucket list, be sure to submit your thoughts before the comment period closes on February 15.

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