Tuesday, April 23, 2013
The Supreme Court's Orphans' Court Procedural Rules Committee is currently seeking suggestions from attorneys, judges, and even the public on how they should change the 40-year-old orphan procedural rules of their orphans' courts. The deadline is June 13, 2013. Once all of comments are considered, the committee will finalize them and submit the rules for adoption by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. If the Supreme Court adopts the rules, then the rules will take effect. This will happen sometime after the court accepts the rules.
The proposed rules will cover Rules 1.1 through 14.5, and cover procedures for "the filing and audit of Accounts, procedures for Orphans' Court matters raised by citation and petition, pre-hearing and post-hearing dispositions, and rules for practice before the Registers of Wills." In other cases, there will be no substantive changes to the rules, only structure changes to the locations of the rules. The new rules are likely to include Explanatory Comments, which will hopefully better explain some of the rules. This proposal has not been submitted to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania at this time and is the accumulation of 5 years of work.
See Neil E. Hendershot, PA Orphans' Court Rules Proposed for Sweeping Changes, PA Elder, Estate & Fiduciary Law Blog, Apr. 4, 2013.