EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSNEW BUSINESS COURT
from Eyewitness News Online
West Virginia Supreme Court Announces New Business Court
Reported by: Jeff Morris
Web Producer: Jeff Morris
Reported: Sep. 11, 2012 3:17 PM EDT
Updated: Sep. 11, 2012 4:19 PM EDT
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
The West Virginia Supreme Court voted 5-0 to approve a new trial court rule establishing a Business Court Division in West Virginia.
The rule was modeled after the rule that governs the Mass Litigation Panel, according to a news release from the state Supreme Court.
“Our goal was to design a court that focuses on the complex issues that arise in commercial litigation,” Justice Robin Jean Davis said at a press conference in the Supreme Court Chamber on Tuesday. “Those issues can get bogged-down in a busy circuit court docket. This provides a way for circuit court judges to be relieved from the burden of handling those novel or complex issues. It also should provide a more expeditious and judicious resolution of disputes for business litigants.”
The time standards for general civil litigation will still apply as they are set forth in an existing rule. However, the new Business Court Division rule directs presiding judges in these cases to “make all reasonable efforts” to conclude Business Litigation within 10 months from the date the case management order is entered.
The Business Court Division can have up to seven judges with seven-year staggered terms. The new division will be effective Oct. 10. The high court will announce its central location at that time, the release said.
House Speaker Rick Thompson said in a news release that he is elated the state Supreme Court is establishing a business court docket within West Virginia’s circuit court system.
“This is a concept I have been advocating for the past four years because I think a separate business docket focusing on resolving commercial litigation will make our state a much more welcoming environment for businesses and assist circuit judges in managing these often complex cases,” Thompson said.
** Photo is of Justice Robin Davis at the announcement of the new business court.
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