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News from the Director

May 25, 2017

EClaims

The current eClaims program will go offline at 5 pm Today, Thursday, May 25, and the new program will be live starting June 1st. During that time, no eClaims data will be accessible, i.e. from 5 pm on May 25 though May 31you will not be able to work on, examine, or submit claims.

Access to the new eClaims system is scheduled for FDAP users to begin on Thursday, June 1, 2017. The best way to access the new e-claims is by going to the following address: https://new.lacap.com/eClaims. Please be sure to bookmark the new address.To start a claim, enter the case number in the search box. The interface differs a little from the old eclaims. Remember this new eClaims website is not operational for First District cases until June 1.

Extensions & Deadlines

Please carefully review these reminders and clarifications regarding deadlines and extensions. Delays not only interfere with the Court’s management of its docket, but can also prevent the Court from granting meaningful relief to our clients.

Care should be taken to avoid a growing backlog of work. Of course, this is easier said than done, and we recognize that managing a caseload as a solo practitioner with an unpredictable practice is no simple thing. Record delays, incomplete records, multiple opinions issuing close in time and requiring follow-up petitions and many other events can cause even the most diligent and organized attorney to get jammed for time and need to seek relief through extensions. Accordingly, extensions of time are unfortunately part of the practice, so when you are in that situation please review and adhere to the following.

Time-Sensitive Cases

In prioritizing your work and in making decisions about whether to seek an extension, consider the time-senstiveness of the case (e.g. short sentence cases, dependency cases, delinquency cases).

EOT Standards:

In most cases, extensions can be granted for “good cause.” Rule 8.63(b) lists many factors the Court will consider. Note, however, that a conclusionary statement that more time is needed “because of press of business” is not “good cause."

Significantly, a special rule applies in appeals from orders terminating parental rights, requiring a showing of “exceptional good cause” for an extension. (Rule8.416(f)) Do not assume that a deadlines in other cases will constitute "exceptional good case."

EOT Timing/Need

In the First District, do not file a request for an extension of time if the brief will be filed within the time allotted by the California Rules of Court, which provides an additional 30 days after the official due date in criminal cases (rule 8.360(c)(5)) and most juvenile cases (rule 8.412(b)(5)) and an additional 15 days in dependency appeals from the termination of parental rights (rule 8.416(g)). The First District will place no stigma upon counsel who file within that time period. If, however, the attorney believes that he or she will not be able to file the brief within the additional time provided by rules 8.412, 8.416, and 8.360, the attorney should file an EOT request before entering the default period.

Last minute extension requests are strongly disfavored. Avoid filing the request less than a week prior to the current due date.

EOT Mechanics: Failing to use the Court's format for an extension can cause you to omit important information. Your EOT format must mirror the Court's form in terms of order and content, although it is not necessary to use the Court's form.

Be sure to explain, with some specifics, what work you have performed on the case since the last deadline. It is important to show that you are making progress on the case.

Denials/Warnings

Yes, the Court sometimes denies extension requests. Always review the order to make sure it was granted in full, rather than granted in part or denied.

Contact FDAP immediately if (1) the Court states “no further extensions will be granted” and you will be unable to meet the new deadline or (2) the Court denies an extension request.

FDAP Deadlines

Finally, please also respect FDAP's deadlines. Last minute requests for a draft review or no-issue review are very problematic. FDAP staff attorneys have deadlines in their own cases and deadlines related to work of other panel attorneys, so they may not be able to get to your case right away. If you are running into time trouble at the draft stage, advance warning to your FDAP consulting attorney is essential.

Prop 57

We recently sent to you a memorandum from the Prison Law Office on the implementation of Prop 57. There is a newer version of that memorandum (dated 4/19/2017) available at http://prisonlaw.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Prop-57-Parole-and-Credits-April-19-2017.pdf.                                                                                      


 

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