The Appellate Division has announced new procedures for emergent applications. The Notice to the Bar that details those procedures is available here.
The key change is that the Appellate Division will no longer publish lists of which judges will be on emergent duty in a given period of time. Those lists sometimes enabled parties to “judge-shop” for an emergent judge. Instead of allowing parties to apply for emergent relief directly to the assigned judge, a party seeking emergent relief is now to contact the Appellate Division Clerk’s Office. The Clerk’s Office will arrange for the applicant to complete a standard form for seeking emergent relief, which is included in the Notice to the Bar, and will then point the applicant to a judge if the matter is deemed worthy of consideration for emergent relief. This procedure parallels the process that the Supreme Court has long used.
The new procedures also distinguish between emergent applications made during trial and other emergent applications. “The court shall entertain an emergent application made during trial only upon a preliminary showing of likelihood of success of the application and that immediate and irreparable harm will result if the application is not entertained.” In contrast, emergent applications made other than during trial “shall be entertained by the court on a showing that a definitive event will occur or specific action is required on a date prior to the date on which a motion made in the ordinary course can be considered by the court, usually three to four weeks after the filing of the motion.”
Applications to extend time, the Appellate Division states, are not considered to be emergent. The new procedures conclude with a caution against “self-created” emergencies.