The Brief - October 2017

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The Brief

Vol. 13, No. 10                                                            October 2017

Play by the rules

The Arizona Supreme Court took action on rule change petitions at the end of August and will consider more petitions in December. The Court Rules Forum is online and a one-stop source for pending petitions, links to the current rules, recent amendments, historical amendments, pending local rule changes, frequently asked questions and more. See the Forum online at

Adopted rule change petitions usually take effect the January following the Court’s rules agendas (August and December). Because of extensive and novel changes in some recent rules, implementation of those rules have been pushed back to July 1, 2018. While the legal community will be reading the new rules as usual, this delayed implementation for some rules is a sign that practitioners and support staff should be looking for continuing education, articles, and other promotional events to learn about the changes and how to implement them so they are prepared on the effective date. This unusual grace period is welcome, but those who are not familiar with and prepared for the changes could find themselves in a tough spot defending their practices or citations to rules that no longer apply. Most of the rules from the August and December agendas will still be effective on January 1, 2018.

Electronic certification

The Clerk’s Office started electronically certifying and transmitting court records to the Arizona Attorney General’s office in 2013 and has expanded the service to other state agencies since then. Electronic certification is a process that digitally places the Clerk’s seal and a unique certification number on individual documents. State agencies are statutorily directed to accept electronically certified documents and non-state agencies and individuals can choose to accept electronically certified records. The Clerk’s Office is developing a plan to expand e-certifications to more documents, including marriage licenses, as a way to improve the security and efficiency of certifying and providing records. Stay tuned for future developments.

We’re open

A reminder for your hectic schedules: The Clerk’s offices will be open regular business hours on Monday, October 9. The Clerk and Superior Court are open on Columbus Day but closed the Friday after Thanksgiving (November 23 and 24).