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Last Post 23 Nov 2021 02:24 PM by  Yolanda Fox
 11 Replies
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Author Messages
Jennifer Thorson
New Member
Posts:2 New Member

09 Jan 2020 03:37 PM
    Hon. Kyle Bryson, Petitioner
    Presiding Judge
    Superior Court of Arizona in Pima County
    110 W. Congress St.
    Tucson, AZ 85701
    [email protected]

    Would permanently adopt the Rules for the Fast Trial and Alternative Resolution Program (“FASTAR”), with modifications.

    Would permanently adopt and amend the Rules for the Fast Trial and Alternative Resolution Program

    Filed January 9, 2020.

    Comment must be submitted on or before May 1, 2020.

    Replies must be submitted on or before June 1, 2020.

    ORDERED: Petition to Permanently Adopt Rules for the Fast Trial and Alternative Resolution Program ("FASTAR") = CONTINUED until further order of the Court.

    Comments due no later than October 15, 2021.

    Reply due no later than October 29, 2021.
    Jeffrey Marks
    New Member
    Posts:4 New Member

    27 Feb 2020 05:23 PM
    While I have no problem with moving civil cases right along, but I believe that FASTSTAR is one of the worst programs ever conceived during my forty two years of practicing law in Tucson. In fact, I have yet to speak with a Tucson or Phoenix lawyer who does not hold FASTSTAR in contempt . When FASTSTAR was first proposed, the presenting judges said it was a way to force trial experience upon new lawyers since the number of civil trials was constantly falling. What concerns me is that jurors are being forcefully summoned to court so that young lawyers can gain experience at the expense of the captive, inconvenienced, and poorly compensated jurors. If lack of trial experience were a pressing issue, a lawyer could realize that fact for himself or herself and go to continuing ed courses, become a prosecutor or public defender, or take on court appointed cases. If the general public got word that they were being involuntarily forced to court to be a teaching tool, I am sure the outrage would be well heard. Also, if a lawyer already has significant trial experience, why must he or she be forced into a program to give him or her more experience? Of course, on the other hand, if a lawyer determines a case should truly be in arbitration and that lawyer happens to represent the Plaintiff, it is draconian to have a penalty that the Plaintiff loses the right to a trial de novo while it is preserved for the defense. For example, not every civil case, such as a collection matter, needs to be set for a FASTAR jury trial when a simple arbitration would work, coupled with the safety net of a trial de novo. Forcing cases out of arbitration also flies in opposition to the fact that using ADR instead of routine court trials is the public policy of Arizona. A further concern is allowing small cases which should be in Justice Court into the realm of Superior Court. In a nutshell, the resolution to this problem that minimally exists, is to expedite smaller Superior Court cases but let the lawyers decided if the matter should go before an arbitrator or jury, and allow for trials de novo.
    Jeffrey A. Marks
    4773 E. Camp Lowell Drive
    Tucson, AZ 85712
    State Bar No. 005670
    Michael Fleishman
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    10 Apr 2020 09:13 AM
    Pursuant to Arizona Supreme Court Rule 28, I am writing to voice my unreserved opposition to Presiding Judge Bryson’s proposal to make the Pima County FASTAR pilot program permanent, at least in its current format. It is clear that the original justifications for instituting the FASTAR system have not been achieved.

    I am solo practitioner with a pretty broad practice that includes real estate, business, insurance, and personal injury litigation. I have been practicing for over fifteen years and have yet to try a case to a jury. On May 12, 2020, I am scheduled for a FASTAR jury trial in a property insurance coverage case.

    In October 2016, the Arizona Committee on Civil Justice Reform (the “Committee”) submitted a report to the Arizona Judicial Council with multiple recommendations to improve civil case processing, including changes to compulsory arbitration. While the Committee noted that the Arizona Judicial Branch has been a national leader in the realm of compulsory arbitration, the Committee expressed concern about compulsory arbitration.

    First, there was an apparent concern about the diversion of cases away from jury trials, which, it has been argued, has had an impact on the opportunity for younger lawyers to acquire trial experience and for litigants to exercise their constitutional right to a jury trial. These concerns were broadly promoted by retired Judge Charles Harrington.

    Second, there was a purported concern that the compulsory arbitration rules concerning appeals from arbitration were unfairly disadvantaging plaintiffs. The concern was that plaintiffs must pay defendant’s litigation costs unless the case outcome following an appeal exceeds the arbitration judgment by at least 23%.

    Finally, there was a misguided belief that the FASTAR system would “resolve less complicated civil claims quickly, efficiently, and fairly.”

    After two years of this experiment, the primary grounds for implementing the FASTAR system have not proven true.

    Trial Experience

    In Mark Meltzer and Judge Harrington’ March 4, 2019 Progress Report to the Arizona Judicial Council on the FASTAR program, they asserted that that “compulsory arbitration contributes to a phenomenon referred to as the ‘vanishing trial.’ Arbitration diverts cases from juries, and this serves to undermine the historic constitutional and cultural roles of jury trials in our communities. Also, because arbitration hearings are customarily conducted outside the courthouse, arbitration decreases the exposure of young attorneys to the courtroom and the experience and competency that comes with courtroom trials.”

    There is no question that the compulsory arbitration system has contributed to a lack of trials, as this was by design. But, the notion that the FASTAR system was going to produce a new generation of trial-tested attorneys is farcical. In its December 2019 Final Report – entitled Impact of the FASTAR Pilot Program on Civil Cases in the Superior Court in Pima County – the National Center for State Courts notes that from October 5, 2017 through September 30, 2019, 1,505 FASTAR cases were filed. Only eight of these FASTAR cases resulted in disposition by jury trial. In other words, one half of one percent of FASTAR cases resulted in a jury trial. How’s that for burgeoning trial opportunities?

    In the end, if young attorneys desire and want trial experience, they should go to work for the County Attorney or Public Defender. The implementation of the FASTAR program was never going to and never has achieved the lofty and unrealistic goal of training up a new generation of trial attorneys. Also, this is not about the good of lawyers, it is about the good of parties to civil actions, most of whom do not want to be in a courtroom. Most prefer the relaxed environment of an arbitration.

    Disadvantaged Plaintiffs

    The FASTAR Progress Report further noted that “[p]articularly in personal injury cases, a plaintiff who received a favorable arbitration award but a less favorable verdict at trial may wind up bearing the substantial cost of defense experts who were hired solely to testify at the retrial.”

    While this is true on its face, the Progress Report does not bear out this concern. First, The Progress Report reported that for “the last full year of the compulsory arbitration system in Pima County, when any party could appeal the arbitration award, the court conducted 5 trials de novo.” Five trials de novo! This is hardly enough cases to warrant making permanent the FASTAR system.

    Notably, in automobile tort cases, parties opted for compulsory arbitration in seventy percent of the filed cases. The Progress Report, almost surprisingly states that “[t]he preference for Alternative Resolution in automobile tort cases is particularly striking given that the FASTAR pilot program was specially designed to address complaints about compulsory arbitration in these cases.”

    Plaintiffs have continued to opt for compulsory arbitration because it has proven to be a preferable course than a FASTAR trial for multiple reasons, not the least of which is cost, as detailed below.

    Case Disposition

    I am not convinced that the FASTAR program has met the goal of “resolv[ing] less complicated civil claims quickly, efficiently, and fairly.” For example, I filed a personal injury Complaint on October 17, 2019 and had an arbitration date set for March 31, 2020 (about five and have months after filing). On the other hand, the insurance case set for an upcoming FASTAR jury trial was filed on September 3, 2019 and goes to trial on May 12, 2020 (about eight months after filing).

    De novo appeal rights

    Like many in the Plaintiff bar, I believe forcing a Plaintiff to waive his or her right to appeal and arbitration award is fundamentally unfair. Allowing only a Defendant to appeal an arbitration award is an unsound provision that will likely only benefit insurance companies.


    Burr Udall, unquestionably one of Arizona’s most experienced trial lawyers has stated – “People don’t want to spend all that time and money on trials. I also think the clients, more and more, don’t want to have eight strangers listen to their problems. They want to get the thing settled.”

    FASTAR trials are no less expensive. The parties spend half a day empaneling a jury. There is also the time spent by the attorneys working on voir dire questions and jury instructions. In the end, the cost of opting for a jury trial, even a FASTAR jury trial, is beyond the reach of most clients. Indeed, most of my clients have opted for compulsory arbitration due to the cost associated with a jury trial.

    The cost issue is all the more pronounced in the personal injury realm. FASTAR Rule 117(d)(1) requires that a party requesting admission of a bill establish foundation that the amount of the bill is reasonable and the treatment or service described in the bill was medically necessary. Forcing a Plaintiff to call medical providers to a trail is very expensive. Many medical providers also do not want to get involved in trial work, which only puts additional pressures on personal injury claimants. In the end, there is very little reason for a personal injury Plaintiff to choose a FASTAR trial.

    If we really wanted to increase the speed to disposition do away with summary judgment motions.


    If the FASTAR program does become permanent, certain changes are needed. I offer the following recommendations.

    1. Remove the opportunity to file motions for summary judgment, which is unquestionably one of the most expensive civil litigation procedures, and a fundamental hurdle in achieving the goal of “resolv[ing] less complicated civil claims quickly, efficiently, and fairly.”

    2. Increase the length of time allowed for service of process to ninety days, as sixty days is often impractical.

    3. Allow either a Plaintiff or a Defendant to appeal a compulsory arbitration award to the Superior Court for a de novo trial.

    4. Allow for an option to select the compulsory arbitration or FASTAR in Turbo Court, rather than having to file a separate choice certificate, which would save $6.70 in every case.

    5. Amend FASTAR Rule 117(d)(1) to conform to FASTAR Rule 123(d)(1). Otherwise, very few motor vehicle tort cases will ever go to a FASTAR trial.

    6. Increase the amount of time a Plaintiff has to serve a Defendant to ninety days, as sixty days has proven burdensome in cases, especially a defendant who avoids service. Or, allow the Court the flexibility to allow longer extensions.

    Michael Fleishman
    Fleishman Law, PLC
    7090 North Oracle Road, Suite 178-255
    Tucson, Arizona 85704
    [email protected]
    Brian Marchetti
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    21 Apr 2020 10:49 AM

    I write in opposition to the proposed amendment to make the FASTAR Pilot Program permanent. I believe arbitration works well and is in the best interest of my clients. As such, I, along with every lawyer I know, have avoided a FASTAR trial. Rather, on my clients’ behalf, I have opted for the ADR option in every action I have filed since November 1, 2017.

    My opposition to the FASTAR program is based on the following factors:

    1) In more than a decade of handling personal injury and general civil litigation cases, not one client has expressed dissatisfaction with having an arbitration rather than a jury trial. Not one. In fact, nearly all (if not all) of my clients have expressed relief at having their “day in court” be in a conference room with an arbitrator, and not in a courtroom surrounded by unpredictable strangers. For cases that are not subject to arbitration, most of my clients have inquired as to what options exist to avoid a jury trial. That is one of the reasons so many cases end up being resolved in a private, binding arbitration.

    2) In my experience, compulsory arbitrations are a fair and cost-effective way to resolve a civil case. I have had only positive experiences with compulsory arbitrators. While some have been unfamiliar with civil subject matter, all of the arbitrators strive to apply the law to the facts and render a fair outcome. More importantly, for my client’s best interest, arbitrators are much more predictable then a jury.

    3) While the unpredictability of juries is the main reason I suggest my clients choose arbitration, the requirement set out in Rule 117(d)(1) is a significant impediment to considering a FASTAR trial. In my experience and opinion, it makes no economic sense for a plaintiff to conduct a FASTAR trial in the typical car accident case. By choosing ADR, pursuant to Rule 123(d), the plaintiff can submit medical records and bills into evidence on their face. Calling a medical provider (or more than one) to a FASTAR Trial to lay foundation is not economically viable. It also may be impossible, as most medical providers do not want to testify at trial (or otherwise). Moreover, scheduling their appearance is not a simple, straightforward task.

    4) I believe it is unfair (and unconstitutional) to force a plaintiff to waive their right to appeal an arbitration award. While I have not yet had a reason to appeal an arbitration award, the inability to do so seems unnecessary and punitive toward the plaintiff. Precluding only the plaintiff from appealing appears, to me at least, to be an effort to force plaintiffs into a trial in which they do not want to participate. I have explained the waiver to many clients over the past three years and nearly all have reacted with outrage or confusion. They simply do not understand why they are forced to waive their right to appeal. Regardless, every client has opted for ADR, which again is evidence that plaintiffs are not clamoring for a “day in the superior court”. They prefer arbitration.

    5) The 60-day time frame for service of process set out in Rule 104 is punitive for plaintiffs and, in my opinion, unnecessary. As a practicing lawyer who files a fair amount of civil cases, I can attest to the fact that serving a defendant usually goes one of two ways. The first way is easy, as there is either a statutory agent or an easily identifiable address for service, and the process server accomplishes service immediately. For those cases, the length of time to serve is not an issue. The other way is becoming more and more prevalent and is a real problem for plaintiff’s lawyers. In those cases, service takes a long time because the defendant is difficult to locate (or is evading service). It is important to remember that in Pima County we rarely have police reports anymore for car accidents. As such, locating the address for the driver is not always a simple task. Often the first address proves to be incorrect, requiring additional research. The 120-day time limit worked well, and I do not understand why it was shortened to 90 days. I did not understand the reasoning behind shortening it again, to 60 days, and only allowing for one 30-day extension. I also do not understand why the service of process length is different for a plaintiff simply because they had the misfortune of getting in a car accident in Pima County that is worth less than $50,000. In any other county, or in Pima County if the value exceeds $50,000, the plaintiff has 90 days to serve. The reality of this rule is that it is punitive toward the plaintiff (and the plaintiff’s lawyer). All civil cases should be treated equally for service of process. The procedural rules for service should be kept simple and uniform.

    If FASTAR does become permanent, which I hope it does not, I offer the following suggestions to help improve the program:

    1) Allow plaintiff’s lawyers to select the ADR option in Turbo Court, rather than having to file a separate statement. As the system is currently set up, the Plaintiff’s lawyer needs to file a separate statement, and that separate statement costs $6.70 per e-filing. Because most cases are resolved in settlement, that cost is passed along to the client.

    2) Allow either plaintiff or defendant to appeal the ADR award.

    3) Amend Rule 117(d)(1) to make it identical to Rule 123(d)(1).

    4) Increase the length of time for service of process in FASTAR to 90 days with an open-ended period to extend based on the assigned judge’s discretion.

    Thank you -

    Brian Marchetti
    Marchetti Wood
    177 N. Church Avenue, Suite 1100
    Tucson, AZ 85701
    (520) 334-2067
    [email protected]
    Kay Radwanski
    New Member
    Posts:18 New Member

    21 Apr 2020 03:31 PM
    Hon. David L. Mackey, Presiding Judge
    Superior Court in Yavapai County
    120 S. Cortez St.
    Prescott, AZ 86303
    Chair, Committee on Superior Court
    Staff: [email protected]

    The Committee on Superior Court, by a unanimous vote of those present at its February 7, 2020, meeting, supports Rule Petition R-20-0012, which proposes adopting the Pima County FASTAR process throughout the State of Arizona. Several members who were not present on February 7 have voiced concerns, and we encourage them to submit their own personal comments on the rule. The committee recognizes the significant time and effort expended on the FASTAR process by Pima County judges Kyle Bryson, Presiding Judge, and our former COSC member, Judge Charles Harrington (Ret.), as well as current member Judge Jeffrey Bergin. We thank them for their leadership on working to reduce delays in civil case processing through use of the FASTAR process.
    Yolanda Fox
    Basic Member
    Posts:232 Basic Member

    28 Apr 2020 02:23 PM
    Victoria Katz
    Senior Rules Attorney
    [email protected]
    850 224 2004

    We are writing to point out an apparent typo in the Appendix version of proposed new Rule 122(f). On page 17 of the Petition, the proposed new paragraph begins with the sentence, "Discovery limits in an Alternative Resolution proceeding are the same as specified in FASTAR Rule 112(b)." This makes sense, as FASTAR Rule 112(b) is entitled "Discovery Limits" and sets forth various discovery deadlines. On page 13 of the Appendix to the Petition, however, the first sentence of section (f) says, "Discovery limits in an Alternative Resolution proceeding are the same as specified in FASTAR Rule 122(b)." Rule 122(b) is entitled "Scheduling an Alternative Resolution Hearing" and contains no discovery deadlines.

    If the proposed amendments are adopted, we respectfully request that section (f) correctly cite to Rule 112(b).

    Thank you for your time and consideration.
    David Buechel
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    30 Apr 2020 07:08 PM
    As the attorney who challenged the legality of the current FASTAR pilot program in Duff v. Lee, 246 Ariz. 418 (App. 2019), review granted, No. CV-19-0128-PR (Ariz. Nov. 19, 2019), the proposed permanent rule changes are premature, at minimum, because a judicial decision on FASTAR is currently pending in the Arizona Supreme Court.

    On the merits, however, I agree with the comments already posted by the other attorneys that oppose this program. Mr. Fleishman, in particular, is correct that the data generated by the FASTAR pilot program supports ending this experiment, not expanding it. The statistics broadly support arbitration under A.R.S. § 12-133. In my view, FASTAR should not be adopted on a permanent basis due to the following additional considerations.


    For over 50 years, the public policy of our state has favored arbitration. See Pima County v. Maya Constr. Co., 158 Ariz. 151, 154 (1988). This policy is manifested and advanced by the compulsory arbitration statute, § 12-133. By “limit[ing] judicial intervention or participation” in cases and by reducing “the primary expense of litigation-attorneys’ fees,” Romer-Pollis v. Ada, 223 Ariz. 300, ¶ 17 (App. 2009) (quoting Canon Sch. Dist. No. 50 v. W.E.S. Constr. Co., 180 Ariz. 148, 152 (1994)), the legislature has created an arbitration system that offers a reasonable, cost-effective alternative to trial, see Lane v. City of Tempe, 202 Ariz. 306, ¶ 6 (2002).

    The FASTAR program pursues a contrary public policy. The Committee on Civil Justice Reform (CCJR), which proposed the draft version of FASTAR, explicitly designed the program to combat the phenomenon of the “vanishing [civil] trial” and to “promote more jury trials in our communities.” Ariz. Sup. Ct., CCJR, A Call to Reform 18-19 (Oct. 2016). The FASTAR architects advocated for this reform, in part, because it would avoid the perceived “downsides of compulsory arbitration”—namely, “divert[ing] cases away from juries,” “divert[ing] cases away from judges,” and “diverting lawyers away from trials,” which deprives attorneys of valuable “experience in the art of trying civil cases.” Id. To achieve these ends, the FASTAR program essentially eliminates compulsory arbitration under § 12-133. See FASTAR 101(b)(2); Ariz. Local R. Prac. Super. Ct. (Pima) 2.9(A). The program further discourages the choice of “Alternative Resolution” arbitration by rules generally requiring a waiver of the right to appeal from arbitration, see FASTAR 103(b)(2), 126(a)(1), thereby creating an incentive for more trials.

    Looking at the bigger picture here, the legislature—which is the representative branch of our government that is directly elected by and accountable to the people of Arizona——has enacted a successful public policy favoring arbitration and discouraging litigation. Regardless of the merits or aims of the FASTAR program, it is simply not the role of the judiciary—which is designed to be the most politically insulated branch of our government—to reverse the success of compulsory arbitration and pursue a contrary public policy in favor of more trials. Throughout our state’s history, when arbitration has not been provided by a contract, the expansion of arbitration has been “practically universally done by statute.” Gates v. Ariz. Brewing Co., 54 Ariz. 266, 270, (1939). Given the success of the compulsory arbitration statute, our supreme court and superior courts should simply leave that system in place, without attempting to undermine or counteract it.

    In the collective experience of my law firm, which has firsthand experience with the FASTAR jury trial, the resolution of lower-value cases by arbitration remains the preferred means of efficiently resolving these actions, even with the waiver rules discussed in detail below. Actual parties subject to those rules uniformly dislike the FASTAR program. Most lawyers do too. They are understandably reluctant, however, to criticize this program, which has been both created and actively promoted by the judges before whom the attorneys regularly appear. With all due respect to the courts and their efforts at reform, it is telling that the only comments in support of FASTAR come from judges and judicial committees.


    FASTAR is also legally problematic, owing to its differing treatment of both plaintiffs and defendants. For plaintiffs, the system denies the substantive right of appeal granted by A.R.S. § 12-2101(A)(1), without any clear reason for doing so. Plaintiffs and defendants, after all, are equally subject to prejudicial errors in a FASTAR “Alternative Resolution” arbitration proceeding, regardless of who selected that proceeding. The question therefore remains unanswered: what value-neutral, non-policy-based reason is there for denying the right of appeal to plaintiffs under FASTAR 103(b) when a case is decided by an arbitrator? Why should no recourse exist when an error affects one party’s substantial rights? Appeals are neither a nuisance nor an impediment to efficiency, as FASTAR presupposes. Appeals are, instead, an essential substantive right conferred by the elected branch of government to ensure the just resolution of controversies.

    When the legislature has wanted parties to lose or waive the right of appeal, the legislature has unequivocally said so—most notably for cases prosecuted in the small-claims division of the justice court. See A.R.S. §§ 22-503, 22-504, 22-519; see also A.R.S. § 22-261(A). By contrast, the legislature has, without exception, preserved the right of appeal for arbitration cases. Lawmakers have granted distinct appeal rights in arbitration cases through A.R.S. § 12-133(H) (the compulsory arbitration statute), A.R.S. § 12-2101(A)(1) (the general appeal statute), and A.R.S. § 12-2101.01 (the appeal statute for the Uniform Arbitration Act and the Revised Uniform Arbitration Act). The FASTAR program is therefore contrary to the legislative will and the substantive law insofar as its waiver rules “diminish or alter” the substantive right to appeal. In re Pima Cty. Juv. Action No. S-933, 135 Ariz. 278, 280 (1982). “The right to appeal ‘can only be given or denied by [the] constitution or the legislature of the state.’” Haywood Secs., Inc. v. Ehrlich, 214 Ariz. 114, ¶ 9 (2007) (quoting State v. Birmingham, 96 Ariz. 109, 111 (1964)).

    Waiver provisions such as those in FASTAR 103(b) are substantive, not procedural, because they do not prescribe the "manner" in which appeals must be taken from arbitration cases—the "how" of how to process appeals from arbitration. See generally Seisinger v. Siebel, 220 Ariz. 85, ¶ 29 (2009) (citing Birmingham, 96 Ariz. at 110). These rules do not simply place a time-limit on appealing arbitration decisions, as with a notice of appeal. (Such a notice is, in fact, a means of facilitating appeals while simultaneously ensuring the finality of decisions.) Nor do the FASTAR rules simply demand that parties actually participate in and exhaust the arbitration process prior to taking an appeal, which was the point of the forfeiture rule upheld in Graf v. Whitaker, 192 Ariz. 403, ¶¶ 12-14 (App. 1998). The FASTAR waiver rules likewise are not based on a party’s misconduct, as with A.R.S. § 13-4033(C) for criminal defendants, or the common-law rule for fugitives before that, see Alday v. State, 15 Ariz. 334, 334 (1914). Rather, the FASTAR waiver rules substantively define and regulate the right of appeal by denying that right in a certain class of cases, deeming such a restriction to be desirable. This overt restriction of the right to appeal by the judiciary violates Article 3 of the Arizona Constitution.

    For defendants, similarly, FASTAR discriminates against them by denying them the choice of whether to proceed with alternative dispute resolution (ADR) or to directly access the courts and immediately assert their right to a jury trial. Arizona’s Privileges and Immunities Clause guarantees all parties “an equal opportunity to the courts and an equal opportunity to appeal.” Eastin v. Broomfield, 116 Ariz. 576, 585 (1977) (quoting Hampton v. Chatwin, 109 Ariz. 98, 99 (1973)). By denying defendants the choice of ADR that is granted to plaintiffs and “plaintiff[s] alone” under FASTAR 103(a), the program denies defendants equal access to the courts and runs afoul of Article 2, Section 13 of the Arizona Constitution. The FASTAR system is unprecedented in its disparate treatment of litigants. But that aspect of the program has not yet received adequate attention to date, given that the case of Duff presents only an as-applied challenge by an individual plaintiff.


    For these reasons, I respectfully continue to oppose the FASTAR program and urge the courts not to expand this program. A more fruitful reform would come from expanding the application of Rule 75(d), Ariz. R. Civ. P., and the similar FASTAR 123(d), as other attorneys have already suggested.

    David D. Buechel
    3501 N. Campbell Ave., Suite 104
    Tucson, AZ 85719-2032
    520-882-0428 Facsimile
    [email protected]

    State Bar of Arizona
    Basic Member
    Posts:164 Basic Member

    01 May 2020 01:17 PM
    Comment of the State Bar of Arizona.

    Lisa M. Panahi, Bar No. 023421
    General Counsel
    State Bar of Arizona
    4201 N. 24th Street, Suite 100
    Phoenix, AZ 85016-6288
    (602) 340-7236
    Yolanda Fox
    Basic Member
    Posts:232 Basic Member

    01 Jun 2020 11:45 AM
    Hon. Kyle Bryson, Petitioner
    Presiding Judge
    Superior Court of Arizona in Pima County
    110 W. Congress St.
    Tucson, AZ 85701
    [email protected]

    Reply to Petition to permanently adopt the Rules for the Fast Trial and Alternative Resolution Program (“FASTAR”), with modifications.
    Flagstaff Larry
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    13 Oct 2021 12:56 PM
    I strongly support the Supreme Court's efforts to expand the FASTAR system.

    We live in a world and at a time when there is increased alienation between many Arizonans and many Americans and their government. While government should be "us," it has for many of our people become "them."

    Making the court system more accessible so that "ordinary citizens" have actual experiences with actual judges should increase respect for government and the "Rule of Law."

    We live in a world in which many opportunities to participate in the legal system have been circumscribed by corporations who insist on conditioning using their products and services with consumers waiving their rights to litigate disputes and with the only available method for resolving such disputes being private and binding arbitration--a system that at best does nothing to inspire respect for the "Rule of Law." Expanding FASTAR and providing competent, cost effective and timely alternative dispute resolution procedures will provide both enhanced substantive rights as well as enhanced confidence in the system.

    Much of the Arizona legal system today is simply unaffordable for ordinary citizens. Legal billing rates of more than $500 an hour are not rare and even more "modest" rates are beyond the ability of most Arizonans to afford. FASTAR offers an approach--albeit a modest one--that should reduce the time and cost of litigation, thus making it more accessible to more Arizonans. It also has the commendable goal and should have the result of reducing the situations in which a modest income Arizonan's only choice is to go to arbitration with a person without special training is dispute resolution.

    The issue of medical bills is a difficult one and ultimately comes down to the question of who should bear the burden--either the plaintiff to prove reasonableness of such expenses or the defendant to disprove the reasonableness. I would suggest that this burden be borne by the party best able to shoulder the burden.

    "Flagstaff Larry"
    Lawrence A. Ruzow
    [email protected]
    P.O. Box 445
    Flagstaff, AZ 86002
    Cell: 602-826-6281
    Robert Bernheim
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    15 Oct 2021 11:41 PM
    Robert A. Bernheim
    400 W. Congress, Ste. 215
    Tucson, AZ 85701
    (P) 520-628-6507
    (F) 520-628-6532
    [email protected]
    Arizona Bar No. 024664

    See attachment and appendix
    Yolanda Fox
    Basic Member
    Posts:232 Basic Member

    23 Nov 2021 02:24 PM
    Hon. Jeffrey T. Bergin, Petitioner
    Presiding Judge
    Superior Court of Arizona in Pima County
    110 W. Congress St., Tucson, AZ 85701

    Topic is locked