Protocol and Practice of Persons Appearing in the Court of Judge Melissa Julian


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Specific Comments or Advice for Litigants

Specific Requirements or Preferences My Judicial Assistant is reachable via (602) 372-0935 and via email at Jorge.Aguirre@JBAZMC.Maricopa.gov.  
 
The Court expects lawyers and all parties to treat each other, opposing parties, court staff, and everyone with respect and professionalism.  
 
Harassment, bias, or prejudice on the basis of race, sex, gender, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, socioeconomic status, or affiliation is strictly prohibited.  
 
This division may hold virtual proceedings on Court Connect at times. The links you receive from my staff, from the automated court calendar notification, from scheduling orders, or from minute entries all lead to my virtual courtroom. Once you click a link to join, please assume you are in the courtroom and on-the-record, so please conduct yourself as if in court and advise others that you may have asked to attend to do the same.  
 
Judge Julian's Division is also one of those piloting CaseCenter, a state-wide electronic exhibit portal. All exhibits being submitted electronically must be submitted through CaseCenter. When the case has been initiated by the Clerk of Court, the attorney of record will receive an email invitation to the case created in CaseCenter. Please access self-guided training and register for an account here: https://www.azcourts.gov/digitalevidence/Training/Attorney-and-Self-Represented-Litigants  
 
Please plan to submit necessary documents other than actual exhibits (proposed orders, Court's copy of exhibits per the below, etc.) via email to Division staff at least by noon the court day before a hearing or trial. Proposed orders of any kind should be lodged in eFile as separate Word documents related to the filing they accompany; there is no need to include the word "Proposed" on the Word format order. (Local Rule 2.17)  
 
Please know and follow all required exhibit and witness procedures in the civil rules, the local rules, Court orders, and presently in-effect administrative orders. Counsel and self-represented Parties submitting courtesy copy exhibits to this division's staff shall affirm in the transmitting email that they are accurate electronic copies of the exhibits provided to the Clerk of the Superior Court, via CaseCenter or otherwise, for the hearing or trial.  
 
Judge Julian does not require courtesy hard copies of any item, unless you are submitting deposition designations per the procedure noted in the Trial Setting minute entry. Only then are paper copies of designated deposition transcripts with objection and response charts/annotations helpful.  
 
Counsel preparing witnesses for remote hearings should provide them with the Notice to Witness re: Testimony in Remote Hearing. Please request a PDF copy of the Notice to Witness from division staff should you need it.

Pre-Trial Practice and Management Issues

Motion Practice This division handles most motions via eFile; please lodge a Word format electronic form of order. There is no need to include the word "Proposed" or "[Proposed]" on Word format forms of order; omitting it makes e-filing more efficient for the Division.  
 
If agreement on a brief extension of a response or reply deadline is reached, please email division staff (Jorge.Aguirre@JBAZMC.Maricopa.gov), copying all counsel and self-represented parties to advise of that. For longer extensions, or those affecting Court-ordered deadlines or hearings, please e-file a motion or stipulation, lodging with it a Word format electronic form of order.  
 
No party should include more that one motion in a single filing or combine a response and a motion or a reply and a motion in one filing (with the exception of a true cross-motion for summary judgment). This applies to requests for attorneys' fees or sanctions. Such requests should be made by separate motion.  
 
No party should file supplemental briefing without leave of Court.  
All citations shall be included in the body of the brief and not in footnotes.  
 
Page limits should not be exceeded with leave of court.  
The Court permits only one Motion for Summary Judgment per party absent leave of Court for good cause shown.  
 
Motions in Limine should not be filed in bench trials without leave of Court.  
 
Absent leave of Court for good cause shown, each party may file no more than five Motions in Limine. Motions in Limine should address only matters that are extremely prejudicial and could result in a mistrial. Motions in Limine should not be filed on routine evidentiary matters. Motions in Limine asking the Court to enforce a particular rule of evidence should not be filed. Motions in Limine are to be no more than four pages in length and responses are no more than four pages in length. There are no replies.  
Oral argument should not be a regurgitation of matters in the briefs. The Court will likely have questions at oral argument.
Discovery or Disclosure Disputes and/or Sanctions This Division requires strict compliance with Ariz. R. Civ. P. 26(d), the Expedited Procedure for Resolving Discovery and Disclosure Disputes. All disputes between parties that could be addressed in motions for protective order under Rule 26(c) or motions to compel discovery or disclosure under Rule 37(a) must first proceed pursuant to Rule 26(d). The Court may decide to later permit full briefing under Ariz. R. Civ. P. 26(d)(1), but the parties may not engage in full briefing without the advance permission of the Court. Attempted full briefing without advance permission of the Court subjects any such motion by a party to summary denial. Other Pre-trial Practice Guidelines or Comments When calling a witness to testify virtually during a trial or hearing, please ensure you or your co-counsel are in communication with the witness so they are aware of when to connect to the virtual proceeding. Trial time is limited and precious.  
 
When the Rule of Exclusion, Ariz. R. Evid. 615, has been invoked, all counsel should inform their party’s witnesses of its invocation and meaning, and all counsel and parties should be vigilant to assist the Court in ensuring that no witnesses enter the courtroom, or dial-in or link-in to the courtroom telephonically or otherwise, while other witnesses are testifying, which would be in violation of the rule.

Trial Practice and Protocol

Trial Schedule Hearings and Trials run from 9:00 a.m. to noon and/or 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. There will be a mid-morning break and a mid-afternoon break each day so that the parties can expect to be allocated five hours of trial time per day of trial. Joint Pre-Trial Memo and/or Conference; Exhibits and Objections See discussion on motion practice for Motions in Limine.  
 
Please try to remove all duplicate exhibits. Stipulated exhibits are generally admitted at the pre-trial management conference. If there are major issues about an exhibit, please be prepared to address them at the pre-trial management conference. Please have a copy of the exhibit in question for the Court. With large documents, please consider only having the operative language admitted. If there is a 100 page contract with only one sentence in dispute, there generally is no need to admit the entire document. Please seriously consider what documents are necessary for your case. The court does not look favorably on having dozens of exhibits presented "just in case" they are necessary.  
 
Jury exhibit notebooks are encouraged. Counsel should discuss the notebooks and try to agree on what goes in the notebook. If they disagree, then this can be discussed at the pre-trial management conference.  
Exhibits can and should be presented "on the screen" via the ELMO, when practicable.
Jury Selection We use the struck method where the entire panel is questioned. Counsel are provided a short period of time to ask follow up questions. This generally should not exceed 15 to 30 minutes. We generally will seat 9 jurors and counsel are asked to seriously consider having the alternate deliberate with seven of nine for a verdict. Trial Practice and Procedure Counsel are generally free to move around the courtroom during trial, but should request permission to approach the witness. Please stand when making objections. Objections should be short and succinct. There are no speaking objections allowed. If the Court wants a response or further discussion, the Court will ask for it. We have electronic equipment in the courtroom, which counsel are free to use. Please make an appointment before trial with court staff to talk about how to use the equipment. Other Courtroom Policies and Recommendations Please do not email Judge Julian directly about a case, even if you copy all counsel on the email. Please also do not use Court Connect, GoToMeeting, or any other electronic platform to 'chat' Judge Julian, whether we are on the record or off the record at the time.  
 
If you need to communicate with the Division, please contact staff at the email addresses listed above. Exigencies during an on-the-record proceeding might also be handled by 'chatting' staff only if they are available in Court Connect for that function. Please ensure that your chat message only goes to the Division staff member you intended and not to all in a proceeding.  
 
In any event, DO NOT use Court Connect, GoToMeeting, or any other text or electronic platform to chat or message a witness while they are testifying or to side-chat any party in a virtual proceeding. Chat-logs are public and permanent, and virtual court proceedings operate with the same formality and prohibitions as in-person proceedings. Please advise clients and witnesses of the same. Thank you.