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ALJ Lord Amends Ground Rules to Permit Reply Briefs

On November 17, 2014, Administrative Law Judge Dee Lord amended her Ground Rules to permit parties filing motions to file a reply brief without first seeking leave from the ALJ. This presents a significant change in motions practice before ALJ Lord that differentiates her motions practice from the procedures used by the other Administrative Law Judges at the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC).

By way of background, under the Commission’s rules, “[t]he moving party shall have no right to reply, except as permitted by the administrative law judge or the Commission.” 19 C.F.R. § 210.15. The practice at the ITC before the other ALJs is that a party seeking to file a reply brief must file a separate motion seek permission to file a reply brief. The moving party must show good cause for the granting of the right to file a reply brief, and attach the proposed reply brief to the motion for permission to reply. The non-moving party to the underlying motion then has the opportunity to oppose the motion for a reply brief,

The amendment to ALJ Lord’s ground rules in Investigation Nos. 925 and 935 provides that “the moving party is permitted to file a reply brief within three (3) days of the filing of a response to the motion without seeking leave from the Administrative Law Judge.” In the Matter of Certain Personal Transporters, Components Thereof, and Manuals Therefor, No. 337-TA-935, Order No. 3 (Nov. 17, 2014). The order also states sur-reply briefs will “not be permitted absent extraordinary circumstances.” As a result, ALJ Lord breaks from her colleagues at the USITC, though this change brings her motions practice more in line with district court practice, and simplify procedures for parties appearing before her.

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