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In re Special Task Force on Practice and Procedure in Civil Cases

Supreme Court of Arkansas

February 26, 2015

IN RE SPECIAL TASK FORCE ON PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE IN CIVIL CASES-AMENDMENTS TO ARK. R. CIV. P. 11 AND 42

PER CURIAM

Our Special Task Force on Practice and Procedure in Civil Cases proposed amendments to Ark. R. Civ. P. 11 and 42. See In re Special Task Force on Practice & Procedure in Civil Cases, 2014 Ark. 5 (per curiam). The proposals were referred to the Committee on Civil Practice, which reviewed these proposals and the comments that were received after the proposals had been published for comment. The Committee revised the proposed rules, and we republished them for comment. See In re Special Task Force on Practice & Procedure in Civil Cases–Proposed Amendments to Ark. R. Civ. P. 11 and 42, 2014 Ark. 344 (per curiam).

Today, we adopt the amendments to Rules 11 and 42, as set out below, and republish the rules. The amendments are effective April 1, 2015. Our previous per curiam orders, cited above, along with the Reporter's Notes that accompany the rules, should be consulted for a discussion of these amendments.

With the adoption of the revisions to Rule 11, section 21 of the Civil Justice Reform Act of 2003, codified at Ark. Code Ann. § 16-114-209, is superseded pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 16-11-301. With the adoption of the amendment to Rule 42, Ark. Code Ann. § 16-55-211 is superseded pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 16-11-301.

We thank the members of the Task Force, the members of the Civil Practice Committee, and everyone who reviewed the proposals and submitted comments for their assistance in bringing these provisions to fruition.

Rule 11. Signing of Pleadings, Motions, and Other Papers; Sanctions.

(a) Signature. Every pleading, written motion, and other paper of a party represented by an attorney shall be signed by at least one attorney of record in his or her individual name, whose address shall be stated. A party who is not represented by an attorney shall sign his or her pleading, motion, or other paper and state his or her address and telephone number, if any. Except when otherwise specifically provided by rule or statute, pleadings need not be verified or accompanied by affidavit.

(b) Certificate. The signature of an attorney or party constitutes a certificate by the signatory that to the best of his or her knowledge, information, and belief, formed after an inquiry reasonable under the circumstances:

(1) the pleading, motion, or other paper is not interposed for any improper purpose, such as to harass, cause unnecessary delay, or needlessly increase the cost of litigation;
(2) the claims, defenses, and other legal contentions are warranted by existing law or by a nonfrivolous argument for extending, modifying, or reversing existing law or for establishing new law;
(3) the factual contentions have evidentiary support;
(4) the denials of factual contentions are warranted on the evidence or, if specifically so identified, are reasonably based on belief or a lack of information;
(5) when a party's claim or affirmative defense may only be established in whole or in part by expert testimony, the party has consulted with at least one expert, or has learned in discovery of the opinion of at least one expert, who (i) is believed to be competent under Ark. R. Evid. 702 to express an opinion in the action and (ii) concludes on the basis of the available information that there is a reasonable basis to assert the claim or affirmative defense; and
(6) the pleading, motion, or other paper complies with the requirements of Rule 5(c)(2) regarding redaction of confidential information from ...

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