District of New Jersey Issues New Amendments to Local Civil Rules

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Source: New Jersey Federal Practice Alert

On June 21, 2021, Chief Judge Freda L. Wolfson of the District Of New Jersey entered two Orders amending the District’s local civil rules, both of which are effective immediately:

First, the Court adopted new Local Civil Rule 7.1.1, which requires the disclosure of third-party litigation funding within 30 days of the opening of a new matter in the District (or promptly after learning of the information disclosed).  The Rule requires disclosure of any partial or complete funding of attorneys’ fees and expenses in exchange for either (1) a contingent financial interest based upon the results of the litigation or (2) a non-monetary result that is not in the nature of a personal or bank loan or insurance.  The disclosure should include the identity of the funder, the nature of any types of approval by the funder in litigation or settlement decisions, and a description of the financial interest.  Additional discovery concerning this issue is permitted upon a showing of good cause.

The new local civil rule also applies to all pending cases, and the required disclosure must be filed within 45 days of the entry of the Order, or by August 5, 2021.

Second, the Court amended Local Civil Rule 33.1, governing interrogatories, to add a new sub-part (d).  That subpart indicates that contention interrogatories may not be served until 60 days prior to the close of fact discovery, unless otherwise permitted by the Court.  Previously, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(d)(1) governed the timing of permissible service of contention interrogatories.

The Court’s two Orders, which include the Local Civil Rules at issue, can be found at the following links.

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