CPLR R. 2102(c); 22 NYCRR 202.5(d)(1) Bronx Clerks Agree to Follow Rules: Attorneys’ Minds Blown

CPLR R. 2102 Filing of papers
(c) A clerk shall not refuse to accept for filing any paper presented for that purpose except where specifically directed to do so by statute or rules promulgated by the chief administrator of the courts, or order of the court.

22 NYCRR 202.5 Papers filed in court

(d)
(1)

[editor’s note: for the life of me I can’t find this thing.  Westlaw hasn’t updated itself yet and I can’t find it anywhere else.

The New York Law Journal (New Rule Specifies When Court Clerks Can Reject Lawsuit Documents) introduced us to a new rule (22 NYCRR 202.5(d)(1) detailing when and how a court clerk can reject a document.  The rule comes out of an Article 78 proceeding by Tilem & Campbell, whose papers were getting bounced by Bronx clerks unnecessarily.  After the Bronx clerks agreed to follow the law, the lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice.  Crazy right, only after the clerks agreed to follow the law…  The new rule, allows the clerks to reject papers for only four reasons: (1) papers do not have an index number; (2) documents commencing or concluding a lawsuit that do not list the names of all parties; (3) filings offered in the wrong county; (4) documents not signed as required by court rules authorizing sanctions for frivolous contentions.

That’s it.  If (1)-(4) isn’t there, the clerk can’t reject it.  Period. 

The rule adds an additional twist, it requires clerks to date-stamp the rejected papers and write the reason for the rejection on the papers.  I don’t think a colored sheet with check-off reasons will suffice, but I’m going on what the NYLJ reported, I haven’t seen the rule myself.

Whether the clerks in other venues will agree to follow the rules remains to be seen.  The New York clerks might need a push.  They did the last time.

And, just because: The NYLJ article references 2102 as a section; it isn’t, it’s a rule, not that it matters.

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