COUNTY RULES OF PRACTICE
OF THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS
Domestic Relations Division
Effective July 1, 1984 unless otherwise noted
Upon the original filing of a case, the case shall be assigned by lot to a specific Judge and Magistrate of this Court. A case that is reactivated by motion shall be assigned to the original Judge and Magistrate unless the Administrative Judge determines that cases must be reassigned to balance caseloads between judges / magistrates, or if the original action was filed prior to January 1, 1991, the case shall be assigned in the same manner as an original filing.
In the event the same parties each file separate cases, the first case filed shall be assigned by lot to a specific judge and magistrate. The second case filed shall be assigned to the same judge and magistrate.
In any instance where a previously filed and dismissed case is refiled, that case shall be reassigned to the Judge and Magistrate originally assigned by lot to hear it; unless for good cause shown, that Judge or Magistrate is precluded from hearing the case. When a Judge or Magistrate leaves the Court his or her cases will be assigned to his or her successor. To allow for other responsibilities, assignments to the Administrative Judge shall be reduced by fifteen percent.
Once assigned to a case, the assigned Judge becomes primarily responsible for the determination of every issue and proceeding in the case until its termination. All preliminary matters, including requests for continuances, must be submitted for disposition to the Judge or Magistrate to whom the case is assigned, or if he or she is unavailable, to the Duty Judge or Duty Magistrate.
None of the above language shall be construed to limit the reference of cases to Magistrates pursuant to Civil Rule 53 or Local Rule 8. Notwithstanding those rules, the following matters shall be docketed for and heard only by the assigned Judge, or another Judge willing to hear the matter, except with permission of the Administrative Judge of this Court, a Judge may refer specific cases to a Magistrate if the case cannot be heard due to unavailability of docket time:
a) Final hearings for divorce and dissolution, and motions
directly related to such final hearings on the merits.
b) Motions for a new trial
or to vacate and set aside any
matter heard and decided by a Judge.
c) Final domestic violence
(Effective February 25, 1993; 10/1/04)