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Attention all litigators!  Big changes to the Status Conferences under Rule 48 of the Rules of Civil Procedure

On January 1, 2015, Rule 48 will be substantially changed with respect to dismissal for delay and status conferences. There will now be 5 years to set a matter down for trial (as opposed to the old rule of 2 years).  But the court won’t send a status notice anymore – they will just send an order dismissing the action!  By the way, this is retroactive.  In any existing action, every status notice and notice of dismissal becomes void as of January 1, 2015 unless your status hearing was already scheduled.  So avoid the call to LawPro and go through your files and diarize the 5 year date – going back to January 2, 2012.  The first date this will apply is January 1, 2017 – so all your files that were started January 1, 2012 or earlier will have until January 1, 2017 to set down for trial.