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Solo In Chicago

...empowering the Second City's entrepreneurial legal community

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Emergency Motion Strategy

Do you ever file these? Frankly I think a lot like Orders of Protection there's a tendency for them to be abused, but, when done right they can give you a big tactical advantage. By definition, an Emergency Motion is a motion that's presented in court without the normal requisite 5 business days notice. The Cook local rule allows these to be presented ex parte but typically you are going to give notice to your opposition by fax, just with less than 5 days notice.

I brought one in court last week with a degree of effectiveness. Your first hurdle frankly is totally subjective, will your judge say the issue you're raising is an emergency or something that should be set based on the normal notice provisions. In the courtrooms I'm frequenting I'd say that less then 50% of the time are judges allowing these emergency motions to proceed when initially presented. But, if you clear that hurdle you have a chance to get some things done. Interestingly, a big reason is often that since your opponent doesn't have much notice, she can't get her client into court and in a sense the judge is getting only your side of the story. Also, if you're dealing with a small firm on the other side oftentimes there can be lawyer conflicts that won't let the lawyer get to court.

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