Pursuant to Article VIII § 3 of the West Virginia Constitution, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia "shall have power to promulgate rules for all cases and proceedings, civil and criminal, for all the courts of the State relating to writs, warrants, process, practice and procedure, which shall have the force and effect of law." See also W. Va. Code § 51-1-4. The Court exercises this authority by issuing rules orders at various times throughout the year. Comments from the public, the bench, and the bar are important to the judicial rule making process. This page lists matters that are currently placed for public comment.
How to File Public Comments
Public comments on proposed rules must be in writing and filed with the Clerk of Court on or before the deadline set forth in the order. The Court encourages interest groups to submit joint comments where appropriate. Email comments are not encouraged and receipt of email comments will not be acknowledged.
Current Requests for Public Comment
- REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT ON THE PROPOSED REVISIONS TO TRIAL COURT RULE 29, RELATING TO THE BUSINESS COURT DIVISION By order entered April 11, 2014, the Court approved a 30-day period of public comment on proposed revisions to Trial Court Rule 29, governing the Business Court Division. The public comment period closes on Monday, May 12, 2014.
- REQUEST FOR COMMENT ON PROPOSED REVISIONS TO THE RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT AND ANCILLARY MATTERS. By order entered April 14, 2014, the Court approved a 60-day period of public comment on major revisions to the Rules of Professional Conduct that are intended to update the rules in conformity with West Virginia law, and are largely patterned after the American Bar Association Model Rules of Professional Conduct. As a consequence of the proposed revisions to the Rules of Professional Conduct, two additional subject matters are affected: admission of out-of-state lawyers pro hac vice and the administration of client trust accounts, including the Interest on Lawyer’s Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Program. These two subject matters are addressed in Rule 8 of the Rules for Admission to the Practice of Law and proposed State Bar Administrative Rule 10, respectively. State Bar Administrative Rule 10 will form a part of a new set of rules that will replace the existing State Bar Rules and Regulations. The new State Bar Administrative Rules are still under development, and the remaining portions will be released for comment later this year. Because State Bar Administrative Rule 10 relates to the subject matter in the proposed amendments to Rule 1.15 of the Rules of Professional Conduct, it is appropriate for consideration as part of this package of rule changes. All practicing lawyers are encouraged to review the revisions carefully and submit comments. The public comment period closes on Friday, June 13, 2014.
Recently Concluded Comment Periods
- REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT ON THE PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO THE WEST VIRGINIA TRIAL COURT RULES, RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE AND RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE By order entered November 7, 2013, the Court approved a period of public comment on proposed amendments to West Virginia Trial Court Rules, Rules of Civil Procedure and Rules of Criminal Procedure. Comments may be filed, in writing, with the Clerk of the Court, on or before December 30, 2013. The proposed changes are attached to the Court's order.
- REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT ON THE PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO THE RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT PROCEEDINGS, THE GUIDELINES FOR CHILDREN'S GUARDIANS AD LITEM IN CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT PROCEEDINGS, AND THE REQUIRED FORM GUARDIAN AD LITEM REPORT By order entered October 15, 2013, the Court approved a period of public comment on proposed amendments to the Rules of Procedure for Child Abuse and Neglect Proceedings, the Guidelines for Guardians Ad Litem in Child Abuse and Neglect Proceedings, and a required form Guardian Ad Litem Report. Comments may be filed, in writing, with the Clerk of the Court, on or before January 13, 2014. The proposed changes are attached to the Court's order.
- REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT ON PROPOSED REVISIONS TO THE WEST VIRGINIA RULES OF EVIDENCE By order entered September 16, 2013, the Court approved a period of public comment on Proposed Revisions to the West Virginia Rules of Evidence. The proposed revisions are extensive, and the Court urges all interested parties to review the rules carefully and submit comments prior to the deadline of December 16, 2013.