192nd Judicial District Court
Hon. Craig Smith, Presiding
George L. Allen, Sr. Courts Building – 600 Commerce Street, 7th Floor New Tower, Dallas, TX 75202
AMENDED POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
TRIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS AND CALLING OF CASES
Parties are required to make an announcement regarding their readiness for trial in accordance with Dallas Civil Court Rule 3.02. Announcements may be made by:
1) speaking with Winiford Jones, the Court Coordinator, @ 214-653-7709 by 10:30 a.m. on the Friday prior to trial; or
2) sending an email no later than 10:30 a.m. on the Friday prior to trial to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note the following guidelines for email announcements:
1) The Subject/Re: line must contain the words "Trial Announcement."
Failure of the Plaintiff to announce for trial using any of the methods outlined above will result in dismissal for want of prosecution.
If a case has been called in for trial by phone call from the Court Coordinator, the Court will expect the Parties to be in the Courtroom for Docket Call and prepared to go to trial on the date and time contained in the Pre-Trial Order. Failure for the Plaintiff to appear when called in will result in the case being dismissed for want of prosecution pursuant to section 165a of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure.
If a case is set for trial for a particular week but has not been called in as noted above, the case is on standby and subject to being called on short notice at any time during said week or may be carriedover to the following week.
The Court has several dockets, each of which is maintained by either the Court Coordinator or the Court Clerk. The Court's dockets, and the personnel maintaining each, are described as follows:
JURY/NON-JURY TRIAL DOCKET (Contact Court Coordinator 214 653-7709)
All Trial Dockets in the 192nd District Court are for one week. Docket Call is on Monday @ 9:00 a.m. or on the first business day thereafter should Monday be a legal holiday. Only attorneys and pro se parties are required to appear for Docket Call. Clients and witnesses should be on 1 hour standby. Any cases not reached for trial during the week that they are set will be reset for at least 30 days out. All vacation letters should be in the Court file if they are to be considered for reset purposes.
Cases are set on either the Jury Trial Docket or the Non-Jury Trial Docket. Each Jury Trial Docket has a few Non-Jury cases set which will be tried after the completion of all Jury Trials. Please note that the Web's listing does not reflect the official Trial Docket nor the order in which the cases are likely to be called.
All parties involved in cases set on the Trial Docket will receive a Pre-Trial Order containing the date and time of Trial. If the parties wish to submit a more detailed Scheduling Order or Discovery Control Plan, they are welcome to do so as long as the trial date does not differ from the one contained in the original Pre-Trial Order.
All cases set for trial are also ordered to mediation. Mediation Orders are sent at the same time as the Pre-Trial Orders. Parties are allowed to use a mediator different than the one assigned by the Court if an Agreed Motion to Substitute Mediator is filed with the Court along with an Agreed Order to Substitute Mediator. The Parties are expected to serve a copy of the Agreed Motion and Order upon the assigned mediator.
Unless the parties notify the Court Coordinator within 20 days of the date of the Pre-Trial Order that a trial date in not realistic. If the Motion for Continuance has not been filed in time to get a hearing prior to the Trial Date, the case will ride that week's Trial Docket until reached - at which time the Motion will be heard. If the case has already been called in for Docket Call, the Motion will be heard at Docket Call.
If a Motion for Continuance is granted, all parties are to meet with the Court Coordinator immediately following the hearing with calendars to choose a new trial date.
ASBESTOS TRIAL DOCKET (Contact Court Coordinator 214 653-7709)
The regular annual Asbestos Trial Docket for all asbestosis cases filed in the 192nd District Court is the Tuesday following Labor Day - unless otherwise specially set by the Court. All cases filed in the immediate previous year and earlier are set on the regular Asbestos Trial docket.
MOTION DOCKET (Contact Court Clerk 214 653-7748)
Please note that the 192nd Court Clerks will not set a Motion for hearing without a valid Certificate of Conference. This includes Motions for Summary Judgment. Certificates of Conference must include all other counsel and pro se parties.
The 192nd District Court has two options for being set on the Motion Docket: 1) Judge Craig Smith, the sitting Judge; or 2) Associate Judge Sheryl McFarlin. When calling to set a hearing, please take careful note in front of whom the Motion has been set and notify all other parties as to same.
In order to get a hearing set on the Motion Docket, you must call the Court Clerks directly at 214-653-7748. The Motion must be on file in the Court Clerks' office. The Court Clerks will not set hearings with couriers and will not complete Fiats without first speaking to someone who knows the availability and judicial preferences (see below) of the party requesting the hearing.
Judge Smith hears Motions on Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Any hearings that require more than the time allotted will be set at a time convenient for the Court therefore please plan accordingly.
Associate Judge Sheryl McFarlin hears motions for this Court on Monday mornings in Room 6c of the George L. Allen Building. No party may object to the assignment of Associate Judge Sheryl McFarlin but her rulings may be appealed to Judge Smith. A copy of the General Order of Referral and Appeals of Rulings of Court Master may be found at the end of these Policies and Procedures. The Associate Judge has a tape recorder available for all hearings upon request but does not provide a court reporter. Should the parties require a court reporter, they will need to provide one at their own expense
NAME CHANGE PROVE-UPS (Contact Court Clerk 214 653-7748)
Since September 1, 2003, the Court is requiring fingerprint cards for all name changes. Fingerprinting can be done at any local law enforcement agency or at the North Tower Lew Sterrett Jail located next to the Frank Crowley Criminal Courts Building at 133 N. Industrial, Dallas, Texas 75207.
When a Petition for Name Change is filed with this Court, the movant or his/her attorney will be sent a package of information reguarding this new requirement. No name change will be set for hearing until the fingerprint card has been returned to the Court as cleared by DPS and the FBI.
DISMISSAL DOCKET (Contact Court Coordinator 214 653-7709)
Cases are set on a Dismissal Docket for one or more of the following reasons:
1) The Plaintiff has failed to issue and serve process upon Defendant(s) in a timely manner;
All Pre-Trial matters will be heard on the day of trial. Parties may set a Pre-Trial Conference at an earlier time by calling the Court Clerks to be set on the Court's regular Motion Docket.
Prior to appearing at trial, all parties are expected to:
1) Exchange exhibit and witness lists;
IN THE 192ND DISTRICT COURT
GENERAL ORDER OF REFERRAL AND APPEALS OF RULINGS OF COURT MASTER
Pursuant to Chapter 54, Subchapter F, Section 54.507, Texas Government Code, I hereby refer to
all matters that may come before this Court. This Order of Referral shall encompass the powers granted under the Texas Government Code in Section 54.508.
All appeals from recommendations of the Civil District Court Master shall be filed with the Court in writing within three (3) days of the date of the signing of the recommendation or other date as specified by the Court Master in the recommendation. If the third day is a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the written appeal must be on file on the next business day that is not a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday.
SIGNED this the 2nd day of January , 2007.
Original signed version contained in Court Minutes