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Scope of Rules

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Introduction

This section forms the introductory rules to most rule codes. The Pa.R.C.P. is unfortunately lacking this type of clear and concise introduction. There are currently 70 pages of Rules before reaching PA.R.C.P. 1001. Many of the preceding rules have since be rescinded or modified substantial since the Rules were initially numbered and organized. Many have nothing to do with preliminary matters.

Administrative appeals are not subject to the Rules of Civil Procedure and there may be other actions in a similar situation.

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

Rule 1. - Scope and Purpose of Rules

These rules govern the procedure in the United States district courts in all suits of a civil nature whether cognizable as cases at law or in equity or in admiralty, with the exceptions stated in Rule 81. They shall be construed and administered to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action.

Rule 2. One Form of Action

There shall be one form of action to be known as "civil action."

PA Rules of Civil Procedure

Rule 1001. Definition. Scope

(a) As used in this chapter and in Rules 1506 and 1531 through 1535, "action" means a civil action brought in or appealed to any court which is subject to these rules.

(b) There shall be a "civil action" in which shall be brought all claims for relief heretofore asserted in

(1) the action of assumpsit,

(2) the action of trespass, and

(3) the action in equity.

Note: The procedural distinctions between the forms of action in assumpsit, trespass and equity are abolished. The following rules govern particular types of equitable relief: Rule 1506 (stockholder's derivative suits, Rule 1531 (injunctions), Rule 1532 (perpetuation of testimony), Rule 1533 (receivers), Rule 1534 (Accounting by Fiduciaries) and Rule 1535 (objections to security). The action to prevent waste has been abolished. The relief formerly available in that action may be obtained in a civil action seeking equitable relief See Rule 1041.1 for special provisions governing asbestos litigation.

(c) Other forms of action which incorporate these rules by reference shall be known as "civil action--(type of action)".

Note: For example, the action of mandamus shall be known as "civil action-- mandamus".

Comments

The Rules of Criminal Procedure for PA are much tighter than the Civil Rules. As can be seen, what little the PaRCP has for this category of rules is confusing and lacking standard information found in the Federal Rules and presumably those from other states.

Proposed PA Rules of Civil Procedure

Rule 1000. Scope of Rules

(A) These rules shall govern civil proceedings in all courts of Common Pleas in Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise specifically provided, these rules shall not apply to appeals from administrative agencies.

(B) Each of the courts exercising civil jurisdiction may adopt local rules of procedure in accordance with Rule [XXXX]. Unless otherwise specifically provided, local rules shall not apply to appeals from administrative agencies.

Rule 1001. Purpose and Construction

(A) These rules are intended to provide for the just determination of all suits of a civil nature whether cognizable as cases at law or in equity, with the exceptions stated in Rule [XXXX].

(B) These rules shall be construed and administered to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action.

(C) To the extent practicable, these rules shall be construed in consonance with the rules of statutory construction.

Rule 1002. Citing the Civil Procedural Rules

All civil procedural rules adopted by the Supreme Court under the authority of Article V § 10(c) of the Constitution of Pennsylvania, adopted April 23, 1968, shall be known as the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure and shall be cited as "Pa.R.C.P. [Number of Rule]"

Rule 1003. One Form of Action

There shall be one form of action to be known as "civil action."


PA Rules of Criminal Procedure

Rule 100. Scope of Rules

(A) These rules shall govern criminal proceedings in all courts including courts not of record. Unless otherwise specifically provided, these rules shall not apply to juvenile or domestic relations proceedings.

(B) Each of the courts exercising criminal jurisdiction may adopt local rules of procedure in accordance with Rule 105.

Rule 101. Purpose and Construction

(A) These rules are intended to provide for the just determination of every criminal proceeding.

(B) These rules shall be construed to secure simplicity in procedure, fairness in administration, and the elimination of unjustifiable expense and delay.

(C) To the extent practicable, these rules shall be construed in consonance with the rules of statutory construction.

Rule 102. Citing the Criminal Procedural Rules

All criminal procedural rules adopted by the Supreme Court under the authority of Article V § 10(c) of the Constitution of Pennsylvania, adopted April 23, 1968, shall be known as the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure and shall be cited as "Pa.R.Crim.P .. "

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