CALENDAR PRACTICE and TRIAL PREFERENCES
The Sections of Article 34.:
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3401. Rules for the hearing of causes
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3402. Note of Issue
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3403. Trial preferences
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3404. Dismissal of abandoned cases
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3405. Arbitration of certain claims
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3406. Mandatory filing and pre-calendar conference in dental, podiatric and medical malpractice actions
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3407. Preliminary conference in personal injury actions involving certain terminally ill parties
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3408. Mandatory settlement conference in residential foreclosure actions
- NY CPLR Rule Rule 3409. Settlement conference in dental, pediatric and medical malpractice actions
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3401. RULES FOR THE HEARING OF CAUSES
The chief administrator of the courts shall adopt rules regulating the hearing of causes, which may include the filing of notes of issue, the preparation and publication of calendars and the calendar practice for the courts of the unified court system. Insofar as practicable, such rules within the city of New York shall be uniform.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3402. NOTE OF ISSUE
(a) Placing case on calendar. At any time after issue is first joined, or at least forty days after service of a summons has been completed irrespective of joinder of issue, any party may place a case upon the calendar by filing, within ten days after service, with proof of such service two copies of a note of issue with the clerk and such other data as may be required by the applicable rules of the court in which the note is filed. The clerk shall enter the case upon the calendar as of the date of the filing of the note of issue.
(b) New parties. A party who brings in a new party shall within five days thereafter serve him with the note of issue and file a statement with the clerk advising him of the bringing in of such new party and of any change in the title of the action, with proof of service of the note of issue upon the new party, and of such statement upon all parties who have appeared in the action. The case shall retain its place upon the calendar unless the court otherwise directs.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3403. TRIAL PREFERENCES
(a) Preferred cases. Civil cases shall be tried in the order in which notes of issue have been filed, but the following shall be entitled to a preference:
- an action brought by or against the state, or a political subdivision of the state, or an officer or board of officers of the state or a political subdivision of the state, in his or its official capacity, on the application of the state, the political subdivision, or the officer or board of officers;
- an action where a preference is provided for by statute; and
- an action in which the interests of justice will be served by an early trial.
- in any action upon the application of a party who has reached the age of seventy years.
- an action to recover damages for medical, dental or pediatric malpractice.
- an action to recover damages for personal injuries where the plaintiff is terminally ill and alleges that such terminal illness is a result of the conduct, culpability or negligence of the defendant.
(b) Obtaining preference. Unless the court otherwise orders, notice of a motion for preference shall be served with the note of issue by the party serving the note of issue, or ten days after such service by any other party; or thereafter during the pendency of the action upon the application of a party who reaches the age of seventy years, or who is terminally ill.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3404. DISMISSAL OF ABANDONED CASES
A case in the supreme court or a county court marked “off” or struck from the calendar or unanswered on a clerk’s calendar call, and not restored within one year thereafter, shall be deemed abandoned and shall be dismissed without costs for neglect to prosecute. The clerk shall make an appropriate entry without the necessity of an order.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3405. ARBITRATION OF CERTAIN CLAIMS
The chief judge of the court of appeals may promulgate rules for the arbitration of claims for the recovery of a sum of money not exceeding six thousand dollars, exclusive of interest, pending in any court or courts except the civil court of the city of New York, and not exceeding ten thousand dollars, exclusive of interest, pending in the civil court of the city of New York. Such rules must permit a jury trial de novo upon demand by any party following the determination of the arbitrators and may require the demander to pay the cost of arbitration; and shall also provide for all procedures necessary to initiate, conduct and determine the arbitration. A judgment may be entered upon the arbitration award. The rules shall further provide for the recruitment and qualifications of the arbitrators and for their compensation; except that such rules may authorize use of judicial hearing officers as arbitrators. All expenses for compensation, reimbursement and administration under this rule shall be a state charge to be paid out of funds appropriated to the administrative office for the courts for that purpose.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3406. MANDATORY FILING AND PRE-CALENDAR CONFERENCE IN DENTAL, PEDIATRIC AND MEDICAL MALPRACTICE ACTIONS
(a) Mandatory filing. Not more than sixty days after issue is joined, the plaintiff in an action to recover damages for dental, medical or podiatric malpractice shall file with the clerk of the court in which the action is commenced a notice of dental, medical or podiatric malpractice action, on a form to be specified by the chief administrator of the courts. Together with such notice, the plaintiff shall file:
- (i) proof of service of such notice upon all other parties to the action;
- (ii) proof that, if demanded, authorizations to obtain medical, dental, podiatric and hospital records have been served upon the defendants in the action; and
- (iii) such other papers as may be required to be filed by rule of the chief administrator of the courts. The time for filing a notice of dental, medical or podiatric malpractice action may be extended by the court only upon a motion made pursuant to section two thousand four of this chapter.
(b) Pre-calendar conference. The chief administrator of the courts, in accordance with such standards and administrative policies as may be promulgated pursuant to section twenty-eight of article six of the constitution , shall adopt special calendar control rules for actions to recover damages for dental, podiatric or medical malpractice. Such rules shall require a pre-calendar conference in such an action, the purpose of which shall include, but not be limited to, encouraging settlement, simplifying or limiting issues and establishing a timetable for disclosure, establishing a timetable for offers and depositions pursuant to subparagraph (ii) of paragraph one of subdivision (d) of section thirty-one hundred one of this chapter, future conferences, and trial. The timetable for disclosure shall provide for the completion of disclosure not later than twelve months after the notice of dental, podiatric or medical malpractice is filed and shall require that all parties be ready for the trial of the case not later than eighteen months after such notice is filed. The initial pre-calendar conference shall be held after issue is joined in a case but before a note of issue is filed. To the extent feasible, the justice convening the pre-calendar conference shall hear and decide all subsequent pre-trial motions in the case and shall be assigned the trial of the case. The chief administrator of the courts also shall provide for the imposition of costs or other sanctions, including imposition of reasonable attorney’s fees, dismissal of an action, claim, cross-claim, counterclaim or defense, or rendering a judgment by default for failure of a party or a party’s attorney to comply with these special calendar control rules or any order of a court made thereunder. The chief administrator of the courts, in the exercise of discretion, may provide for exemption from the requirement of a pre-calendar conference in any judicial district or a county where there exists no demonstrated need for such conferences.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3407. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE IN PERSONAL INJURY ACTIONS INVOLVING CERTAIN TERMINALLY ILL PARTIES
(a) Request for conference. At any time, a party to an action who is terminally ill, and who asserts in a pleading in such action that such terminal illness is the result of the culpable conduct of another party to such action, may request an expedited preliminary conference in such action. Such request shall be filed in writing with the clerk of the court, and shall be accompanied by a physician’s affidavit stating that the party is terminally ill, the nature of the terminal illness, and the duration of life expectancy of such party, if known. The court shall hold a preliminary conference in such action within twenty days after the filing of such a request.
- Preliminary conference. At such preliminary conference, the court shall issue an order establishing a schedule for the completion of all discovery proceedings, to be completed within ninety days after the date of the preliminary conference, unless it can be demonstrated for good cause that a longer period is necessary.
- At such preliminary conference, the court shall issue an order that a note of issue and certificate of readiness be filed in such action within a period of time specified in the order, that the action receive a preference in trial, and that the trial be commenced within one year from the date of such order. In its discretion, and upon application of any party, the court may advance or adjourn such trial date based on the circumstances of the case.
- Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (b) of rule 3214 of this chapter, the service or pendency of a motion under rule 3211 , 3212 or section 3213 of this chapter shall not stay disclosure in an action where a preliminary conference order has been entered pursuant to this rule.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3408. MANDATORY SETTLEMENT CONFERENCE IN RESIDENTIAL FORECLOSURE ACTIONS
- Except as provided in paragraph two of this subdivision, in any residential foreclosure action involving a home loan as such term is defined in section thirteen hundred four of the real property actions and proceedings law , in which the defendant is a resident of the property subject to foreclosure, plaintiff shall file proof of service within twenty days of such service, however service is made, and the court shall hold a mandatory conference within sixty days after the date when proof of service upon such defendant is filed with the county clerk, or on such adjourned date as has been agreed to by the parties, for the purpose of holding settlement discussions pertaining to the relative rights and obligations of the parties under the mortgage loan documents, including, but not limited to:
- (i) determining whether the parties can reach a mutually agreeable resolution to help the defendant avoid losing his or her home, and evaluating the potential for a resolution in which payment schedules or amounts may be modified or other workout options may be agreed to, including, but not limited to, a loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu of foreclosure, or any other loss mitigation option; or
- (ii) whatever other purposes the court deems appropriate.
- (i) Paragraph one of this subdivision shall not apply to a home loan secured by a reverse mortgage where the default was triggered by the death of the last surviving borrower unless:
- (A) the last surviving borrower’s spouse, if any, is a resident of the property subject to foreclosure; or
- (B) the last surviving borrower’s successor in interest, who, by bequest or through intestacy, owns, or has a claim to the ownership of the property subject to foreclosure, and who was a resident of such property at the time of the death of such last surviving borrower.
- (ii) The superintendent of financial services may promulgate such rules and regulations as he or she shall deem necessary to implement the provisions of this paragraph.
- (i) Paragraph one of this subdivision shall not apply to a home loan secured by a reverse mortgage where the default was triggered by the death of the last surviving borrower unless:
(a) OR [Eff. Feb. 13, 2020. See, also, subd. (a) above.] In any residential foreclosure action involving a high-cost home loan consummated between January first, two thousand three and September first, two thousand eight, or a subprime or nontraditional home loan, as those terms are defined under section thirteen hundred four of the real property actions and proceedings law , in which the defendant is a resident of the property subject to foreclosure, the court shall hold a mandatory conference within sixty days after the date when proof of service is filed with the county clerk, or on such adjourned date as has been agreed to by the parties, for the purpose of holding settlement discussions pertaining to the relative rights and obligations of the parties under the mortgage loan documents, including, but not limited to:
- determining whether the parties can reach a mutually agreeable resolution to help the defendant avoid losing his or her home, and evaluating the potential for a resolution in which payment schedules or amounts may be modified or other workout options may be agreed to including, but not limited to, a loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu of foreclosure, or any other loss mitigation option; or
- whatever other purposes the court deems appropriate.
(b) At the initial conference held pursuant to this section, any defendant currently appearing pro se, shall be deemed to have made a motion to proceed as a poor person under section eleven hundred one of this chapter. The court shall determine whether such permission shall be granted pursuant to standards set forth in section eleven hundred one of this chapter. If the court appoints defendant counsel pursuant to subdivision (a) of section eleven hundred two of this chapter, it shall adjourn the conference to a date certain for appearance of counsel and settlement discussions pursuant to subdivision (a) of this section, and otherwise shall proceed with the conference.
(c) At any conference held pursuant to this section, the plaintiff and the defendant shall appear in person or by counsel, and each party’s representative at the conference shall be fully authorized to dispose of the case. If the defendant is appearing pro se, the court shall advise the defendant of the nature of the action and his or her rights and responsibilities as a defendant. Where appropriate, the court may permit a representative of the plaintiff or the defendant to attend the settlement conference telephonically or by video-conference.
(d) Upon the filing of a request for judicial intervention in any action pursuant to this section, the court shall send either a copy of such request or the defendant’s name, address and telephone number (if available) to a housing counseling agency or agencies on a list designated by the division of housing and community renewal for the judicial district in which the defendant resides. Such information shall be used by the designated housing counseling agency or agencies exclusively for the purpose of making the homeowner aware of housing counseling and foreclosure prevention services and options available to them.
(e) The court shall promptly send a notice to parties advising them of the time and place of the settlement conference, the purpose of the conference and the requirements of this section. The notice shall be in a form prescribed by the office of court administration, or, at the discretion of the office of court administration, the administrative judge of the judicial district in which the action is pending, and shall advise the parties of the documents that they shall bring to the conference.
- For the plaintiff, such documents shall include, but are not limited to, (i) the payment history; (ii) an itemization of the amounts needed to cure and pay off the loan; (iii) the mortgage and note or copies of the same; (iv) standard application forms and a description of loss mitigation options, if any, which may be available to the defendant; and (v) any other documentation required by the presiding judge. If the plaintiff is not the owner of the mortgage and note, the plaintiff shall provide the name, address and telephone number of the legal owner of the mortgage and note. For cases in which the lender or its servicing agent has evaluated or is evaluating eligibility for home loan modification programs or other loss mitigation options, in addition to the documents listed above, the plaintiff shall bring a summary of the status of the lender’s or servicing agent’s evaluation for such modifications or other loss mitigation options, including, where applicable, a list of outstanding items required for the borrower to complete any modification application, an expected date of completion of the lender’s or servicer agent’s evaluation, and, if the modification(s) was denied, a denial letter or any other document explaining the reason(s) for denial and the data input fields and values used in the net present value evaluation. If the modification was denied on the basis of an investor restriction, the plaintiff shall bring the documentary evidence which provides the basis for the denial, such as a pooling and servicing agreement.
- For the defendant, such documents shall include, but are not limited to, if applicable, information on current income tax returns, expenses, property taxes and previously submitted applications for loss mitigation; benefits information; rental agreements or proof of rental income; and any other documentation relevant to the proceeding required by the presiding judge.
(f) Both the plaintiff and defendant shall negotiate in good faith to reach a mutually agreeable resolution, including but not limited to a loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu of foreclosure, or any other loss mitigation, if possible. Compliance with the obligation to negotiate in good faith pursuant to this section shall be measured by the totality of the circumstances, including but not limited to the following factors:
- Compliance with the requirements of this rule and applicable court rules, court orders, and directives by the court or its designee pertaining to the settlement conference process;
- Compliance with applicable mortgage servicing laws, rules, regulations, investor directives, and loss mitigation standards or options concerning loan modifications, short sales, and deeds in lieu of foreclosure; and
- Conduct consistent with efforts to reach a mutually agreeable resolution, including but not limited to, avoiding unreasonable delay, appearing at the settlement conference with authority to fully dispose of the case, avoiding prosecution of foreclosure proceedings while loss mitigation applications are pending, and providing accurate information to the court and parties.
Neither of the parties’ failure to make the offer or accept the offer made by the other party is sufficient to establish a failure to negotiate in good faith.
(g) The plaintiff must file a notice of discontinuance and vacatur of the lis pendens within ninety days after any settlement agreement or loan modification is fully executed.
(h) A party to a foreclosure action may not charge, impose, or otherwise require payment from the other party for any cost, including but not limited to attorneys’ fees, for appearance at or participation in the settlement conference.
(i) The court may determine whether either party fails to comply with the duty to negotiate in good faith pursuant to subdivision (f) of this section, and order remedies pursuant to subdivisions (j) and (k) of this section, either on motion of any party or sua sponte on notice to the parties, in accordance with such procedures as may be established by the court or the office of court administration. A referee, judicial hearing officer, or other staff designated by the court to oversee the settlement conference process may hear and report findings of fact and conclusions of law, and may make reports and recommendations for relief to the court concerning any party’s failure to negotiate in good faith pursuant to subdivision (f) of this section.
(j) Upon a finding by the court that the plaintiff failed to negotiate in good faith pursuant to subdivision (f) of this section, and order remedies pursuant to this subdivision and subdivision (k) of this section the court shall, at a minimum, toll the accumulation and collection of interest, costs, and fees during any undue delay caused by the plaintiff, and where appropriate, the court may also impose one or more of the following:
- Compel production of any documents requested by the court pursuant to subdivision (e) of this section or the court’s designee during the settlement conference;
- Impose a civil penalty payable to the state that is sufficient to deter repetition of the conduct and in an amount not to exceed twenty-five thousand dollars;
- The court may award actual damages, fees, including attorney fees and expenses to the defendant as a result of plaintiff’s failure to negotiate in good faith; or
- Award any other relief that the court deems just and proper.
(k) Upon a finding by the court that the defendant failed to negotiate in good faith pursuant to subdivision (f) of this section, the court shall, at a minimum, remove the case from the conference calendar. In considering such a finding, the court shall take into account equitable factors including, but not limited to, whether the defendant was represented by counsel.
(l) At the first settlement conference held pursuant to this section, if the defendant has not filed an answer or made a pre-answer motion to dismiss, the court shall:
- advise the defendant of the requirement to answer the complaint;
- explain what is required to answer a complaint in court;
- advise that if an answer is not interposed the ability to contest the foreclosure action and assert defenses may be lost; and
- provide information about available resources for foreclosure prevention assistance.
At the first conference held pursuant to this section, the court shall also provide the defendant with a copy of the Consumer Bill of Rights provided for in section thirteen hundred three of the real property actions and proceedings law .
(m) A defendant who appears at the settlement conference but who failed to file a timely answer, pursuant to rule 320 of the civil practice law and rules , shall be presumed to have a reasonable excuse for the default and shall be permitted to serve and file an answer, without any substantive defenses deemed to have been waived within thirty days of initial appearance at the settlement conference. The default shall be deemed vacated upon service and filing of an answer.
(n) Any motions submitted by the plaintiff or defendant shall be held in abeyance while the settlement conference process is ongoing, except for motions concerning compliance with this rule and its implementing rules.
NY CPLR RULE RULE 3409. SETTLEMENT CONFERENCE IN DENTAL, PEDIATRIC AND MEDICAL MALPRACTICE ACTIONS
In every dental, pediatric or medical malpractice action, the court shall hold a mandatory settlement conference within forty-five days after the filing of the note of issue and certificate of readiness or, if a party moves to vacate the note of issue and certificate of readiness, within forty-five days after the denial of such motion. Where parties are represented by counsel, only attorneys fully familiar with the action and authorized to dispose of the case, or accompanied by a person empowered to act on behalf of the party represented, will be permitted to appear at the conference. Where appropriate, the court may order parties, representatives of parties, representatives of insurance carriers or persons having an interest in any settlement to also attend in person or telephonically at the settlement conference. The chief administrative judge shall by rule adopt procedures to implement such settlement conference.