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Last Post 29 Jun 2021 05:41 PM by  Yolanda Fox
R-21-0025 Petition to Amend the Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedure to Add New Rule 22.1
 3 Replies
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Author Messages
State Bar of Arizona
Basic Member
Posts:101 Basic Member

30 Apr 2021 10:30 PM
    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
    [email protected]

    Would adopt a new Rule 22.1 to the Family Law Rules to govern the marking of exhibits at hearings and at trial.

    Filed: April 30, 2021

    Comments must be submitted on or before Tuesday, June 15, 2021.

    Replies must be submitted on or before Tuesday, June 29, 2021.
    Susan Pickard
    New Member
    Posts:14 New Member

    01 Jun 2021 04:31 PM
    Susan Pickard on behalf of
    Family Court Improvement Committee
    Judge Paul McMurdie, Chair
    1501 W. Washington St., Ste 410.
    Phoenix, AZ 85007

    The Family Court Improvement Committee opposes the rule in its current form. The committee believes that there should be a consistent manner to identify exhibits. However, the proposal does not consider third parties that also submit exhibits in a family case (e.g., grandparents, in loco parentis, etc.). There are several ways for this to be achieved. For example, the petitioner could mark exhibits starting with P1, P2, etc. The respondent begins with R1, R2, etc. A third party could designate the exhibits as TP1, TP2, etc. There are many ways to accomplish the laudable goal; the suggested rule is not one of them.

    Therefore, the committee unanimously recommends that the court refer the concept to a committee of various stakeholders to address the issue.
    Vicky Nicula
    New Member
    Posts:1 New Member

    08 Jun 2021 12:07 PM
    Vicky Nicula on behalf of
    Clerk of Court of Pima County
    110 W. Congress
    Tucson, AZ 85614

    The Clerk's Office opposes the rule as currently submitted. The Clerk's Office current practice of marking exhibits is Petitioner's Exhibits are always identified with numbers and Respondent's Exhibits are always identified with letters. This practice makes it easier for the parties to refer to their exhibits during the hearing in a clear manner and there is less potential of confusion as to admission of exhibits when using numbers and letters. Our office would be in agreement with Option A in the rule, with the following change: Respondent's Exhibits are marked A-Z, AA-AZ , BA-BZ, etc.

    Yolanda Fox
    Basic Member
    Posts:201 Basic Member

    29 Jun 2021 05:41 PM
    Summer Dalton
    Project Manager
    Administrative Office of the Courts
    1501 W. Washington, Ste. 410
    Phoenix, AZ 85007
    Work: 602.452.3496

    The AOC is embarking on a statewide digital evidence portal that was approved by the COT and AJC and I have been assigned to manage the project. This project kicked off in December of 2020 with a contract with Thomson Reuters. Rule Petition R-21-0025, which requests the addition of Rule 22.1 to the Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedures looks to define exhibit numbering requirements which directly impacts this project.

    One of the key features of this portal is that when evidence is uploaded it is automatically numbered sequentially with an exhibit identifier for each side of the case (“section”). A new section can be created for each hearing/trial held and each section is given a unique section identifier. I have provided a visual below because I realize the narrative description is not extremely clear. In the example below, exhibits would be referenced as C1, C2, C3, D1and D2. I did have an opportunity to meet with the petitioners and demonstrate how the portal is set up to number exhibits and they had no concerns with the approach but were still concerned with evidence that was submitted outside of the portal.

    From a technical and statewide management perspective, my concern is that the portal does not support the numbering logic outlined in the proposed rule. I am hoping either an exception could be given for evidence submitted through the portal or preferably that a statewide workgroup is created to discuss standardizing exhibit numbering across all case types.
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