GENERAL RULES OF PROCEDURE IN THE STATE COURTS REVISION ACT
IN THE STATE OF FIRESTONE CONGRESS HERE ASSEMBLED THAT:
Section 1: This act shall be entitled “General Rules of Procedure in the State Courts Revision Act”.
Section 2: If a piece of this Act is enjoined from being enforced by a court then it the enjoined section shall be determined to have been “severed” from this Act.
Section 3: The rules set forth in Section 5 shall be used in any, and all, judicial proceedings held by any court established under Article III of the constitution.
Section 4: The Chief Justice shall ensure that these rules, upon becoming law, are visible on the
Firestone Court’s discord and upon the relevant judicial Trellos.
Section 5: The rules of General Procedure shall be established and set forth as:
RULE 1 - Scope of Rules
a) These rules shall cover each and every legal proceeding conducted within the State.
b) Common law may be used to fill the gaps in these rules.
RULE 2 - Complaint How Taken
a) The plaintiff shall present to the court a complaint against a named defendant. Such a complaint shall include:
i) Name of plaintiff
ii) Easiest way to contact plaintiff
iii) Name of plaintiff’s attorney (if present)
iv) Name of defendant
v) Tangible evidence backing up the allegations
vi) A list of the charges
b) All allegations contained within the complaint shall be pertaining to violations of the law. Any
complaint not meeting this standard must be dismissed by a competent judicial official.
c) Such a complaint may be presented to the court by way of any form of private or direct messaging to a judge of said court, a judge of a superior court, to the Clerk of the Courts, or by way of an authorized, by the Chief Justice, system for the presentation of the complaint.
d) After the presentation of the complaint to the court a judge may select the case for their docket. Any judicial official, bailiff, or other employee of the courts must then serve upon the defendant a copy of the complaint and the name of the presiding officer.
RULE 3 - Arraignment How Taken
a) Before a trial may take place the Judge presiding over the matter shall conduct a hearing either by voice, text, or other presence.
b) Such a hearing shall follow in this order:
i) Confirm the charges listed in the complaint are true and correct (and so correct them if necessary);
ii) confirm the counsel or absence thereof of both parties;
iii) enter a plea for the defendant;
iv) enter into the discovery period as per this Act;
v) determine if the defendant waives their right to a jury or not;
vi) and to take care of any other matters that need taking care of.
c) For a civil matter the right to an attorney is not absolute. In criminal matters such a right is absolute.
i) Should the defendant in a criminal matter request an attorney (where absent), then the judge shall halt all further proceedings until such a time as a qualified attorney is found.
The judge, upon finding no qualified attorney voluntarily willing to take the case, may order a qualified attorney to act as counsel.
Such an order may not force a qualified attorney to act as counsel who has:
(a) Entered a notice of inactivity;
(b) or has a conflict of interest in the matter.
d) The court, when entering a plea from the defendant, shall:
i) Only enter a plea of:
No Contest (aka “nolo contendere”)
ii) The court shall attempt to ensure that the defendant, if pleading guilty, is:
Entering the plea only because they actually committed the offence accused of;
and has not been forced to make this plea.
iii) If a defendant attempts to enter a plea of guilty and the court has reason to believe that one of the conditions under clause(s) d(ii) of this rule is not prevalent then the court shall enter a plea of “Not Guilty”.
e) The presiding judge shall ensure that the plea entered, name of counsel (or note if counsel was waived), evidence and witnesses submitted and approved during discovery, and if the right to a jury was waived or not with the copy of the complaint in the authorized case management system.
f) Upon the entrance of a plea of “Guilty” the trial shall be considered to have been waived and the court shall proceed to sentencing. Otherwise, the court shall proceed to a trial.
g) If the defendant refuses to respond to the presiding officer, the presiding officer shall enter a plea of “Not Guilty”, if a plea has not been entered already, and rule that the defendant did not waive
his/her right to a jury, unless the defendant already waived it.
h) Upon waiving the right to a jury the defendant may not “unwaive it” for soley the matter at hand.
i) An exception shall be made if the defendant can prove that their account did not waive it, they did not intentionally waive it, or they were forced/coerced to waive it.
i) If the right to a jury is waived then the presiding officer shall be the trier of fact. In all other cases, the jury shall be the trier of fact.
RULE 4 - Hearings of the District Court How Taken
a) For matters such as motions, petitions (incl. record expungement petitions), evidence admission, other matters that need no trial in the District Court, or any dispute needing resolution pre-trial, the presiding officer may hold a hearing on the matter.
b) In such a hearing the presiding officer may question witnesses, if presented, along with the parties in the normal fashion (as prescribed by these rules).
RULE 5 - Trial Procedure How Taken
a) The trial shall occur in the following order:
i) Plaintiff Opening Statement
ii) Defendant Opening Statement
iii) Plaintiff Presents Evidence
iv) Defense Presents Evidence
v) Plaintiff Closing Statement
vi) Defendant Closing Statement
vii) Announcement of the verdict
b) In the presentation of evidence the party may present both physical evidence (videos, photographs, etc) and witnesses. In the case of a witness being presented the following shall occur in the following order:
i) Sworn in (take the oath of honesty set forth by the applicable perjury laws) by an employee of the courts or the presiding officer.
ii) Should the counselor be calling the witness as an expert witness, they must specify such to the presiding officer. The presiding officer shall be authorized to declare the witness as a lay witness if they find that the witness has no probative specialization or expertise in any field relevant to the proceedings.
iii) Direct Examination
iv) Cross Examination
v) Re-Direct Examination
vi) Re-Cross Examination
vii) Judicial Examination (only in the instance of the trier of fact being a judge)
c) In the case of physical evidence being presented, the presenting party may present a statement to the court explaining what the evidence shows. The presenting party shall not assume or speculate the contents of the physical evidence.
d) The presiding officer shall present to the trier of fact the evidence after it is presented during the trial and shall additionally place the evidence with the complaint in the same area where the plea
e) The court may enter into a recess, as ordered by the presiding officer, for any reason at any time.
f) Upon reaching a verdict the trier of fact, if that trier is the jury, shall inform the presiding officer privately the verdict that was reached. The presiding officer shall then inform the court publicly or, if present, the head juror shall inform the court.
g) All statements presented to the court or questions asked shall be relevant to the matter at hand.
h) The judge, if the trier of fact, may only find the defendant guilty if they find that the defendant committed the offense beyond a reasonable doubt.
i) The opening and closing statements may be waived by either party.
j) Cross Examination, Re-Cross Examination, Re-Direct Examination, and Judicial Examination
may be waived by the party that is permitted to make the examination or statement however the
presentation of evidence may not be waived by the plaintiff. The defendant may waive their right to present evidence.
k) Unless otherwise ordered by the presiding officer, any witnesses present in the court shall not be sequestered. A party may motion for the court to sequester the witnesses.
l) In the event that a counselor wishes to continue questioning their witness as a different type of witness other than the type they are currently questioning, the presiding justice must confirm that both parties are aware of such alteration before proceeding. The presiding justice is authorized to ask the counselor the reason for such and may cease questioning for purposes as per these rules.
RULE 6 - Court Objections and Motions How Taken
a) The parties may only object to any matter that is:
i) Irrelevant to the matter at hand;
ii) a question presented that is outside of the knowledge of a witness;
iii) an unlawful or unconstitutional action;
iv) meets the guidelines of a recognized motion set forth in law or these rules;
v) or is for some other good cause.
b) When objecting the person objecting must stand and make their objection known to the court. The judge shall then recognize the objection and, upon learning the grounds (reason for the
objection) of the objection, may “overrule” or “sustain” the objection.
i) When an objection is recognized, by the cease of communication by the judge to whomever they were speaking to and directing their attention to the objecting person, all persons in the courtroom shall cease any statement given to the court or question asked until such a time as the court rules on the motion/objection.
c) The following motions shall be recognized by law: motion to dismiss, motion in limine, motion to admit evidence, motion for nolle prosequi, motion for summary judgement, motion for a directed verdict, motion to mistrial, motion to strike, motion to sequester, and motion to compel.
i) A party may, with approval from the presiding officer, move in a manner not prescribed by law or these rules. Such a motion which is vastly different to the motions prescribed in these rules or law shall be considered a formal request to the presiding officer to take certain action.
In petitions for record expungements, none of the below prescribed motions shall take effect (the petitioner may request the petition to be dismissed at any time). Should the Department of Justice contest the record expungement, the prescribed motions may be used as applicable for such a petition.
In hearings of the Supreme Court, all motions prescribed below shall be permitted for use (unless otherwise stated in these rules or law).
ii) Motion to dismiss may be submitted by the defendant during trial or prior to trial. Motion to dismiss seeks to dismiss either (1) the case or (2) one or multiple charge(s) in the case. Motion to dismiss shall only be accepted if either (1) there is no legal principle or basis for the matter or (2) the court lacks jurisdiction for the matter. Upon dismissal, either (1) the case shall be dismissed immediately with prejudice or (2) the charge shall be removed from the case.
iii) Motion in limine may be submitted by either party during a jury trial or prior to a jury trial. Motion in limine seeks to find whether the proposed or submitted evidence or witness(es) could inflame the jury beyond its probative value. Both the party submitting the motion and the opposing party shall be permitted to motion in limine. Upon approval, the presiding officer shall hold a hearing to determine the probative value of the evidence or witness(es). The presiding officer may, as prescribed by the Constitution and law, sequester the jury from the courtroom if permissible. Upon conclusion of such a hearing, the presiding officer shall be permitted to exclude evidence/witness(es) from the trial or retain them.
iv) Motion to admit evidence may be submitted by either party during trial and before the closing statements. See Rule 15(b.ii).
v) Motion for nolle prosequi may be submitted by the plaintiff/prosecution during or prior to trial. In civil matters, the case shall be dismissed without prejudice upon the motion’s submission. In criminal matters, the prosecution must provide valid legal or other meritorious reason to dismiss the case. If the presiding officer has doubt as to the proposed legal or meritorious reason, the case shall remain undismissed. If the presiding officer believes there is valid legal/meritorious reason, the case shall be dismissed without prejudice.
vi) Motion for summary judgement may be submitted prior to trial. The defendant may submit a motion for summary judgement in criminal matters. Either party may submit a motion for summary judgement in civil matters. Motions for summary judgement shall be approved if all of the following requirements are met: (1) the evidence provided meets the burden of proof of the party motioning (2) there is no valid dispute regarding the evidence (3) there is no valid dispute regarding a matter of law (4) any reasonable jury or presiding officer would agree with the party motioning. Motions for summary judgement may not be approved if it can be aptly proven that the opposing party has further evidence or arguments to provide, and that the approval of such a motion could inhibit the opposing party’s right to due process. Upon approval, all trial proceedings are skipped and the case shall fall in favor of the party motioning. Should the plaintiff have submitted this motion, the sentencing phase and further phases shall not be skipped.
vii) Motion for directed verdict is identical to motion for summary judgement, but they may be submitted during trial (before the verdict is reached).
viii) Motion to mistrial may be submitted by either party during any phase of trial. Motion to mistrial requests the presiding officer to decide whether or not a procedural, legal, or decisional error is or has been present in the trial and whether or not this error is grounds for a mistrial. Upon approval, the matter shall be declared a mistrial by the presiding officer. This motion may be submitted after the reaching of the verdict or finding.
ix) Motion to strike may be submitted by either party during any phase of the trial or prior to trial. Motions to strike seeks to find whether any given statement, testimony, speech, outburst, or evidence did or could have inflame the jury or presiding justice. Motion to strike shall differ from motions in limine: motions in limine shall be submitted prior to usage of the piece, motion to strike shall be submitted after the piece has been used (possibly improperly). Upon approval, the piece in question shall be stricken from the record, and the presiding officer shall either not use it as the trier of fact or the jury shall be ordered not to use it. The presiding officer may, at own discretion, provide the jury with a transcript of the matter excluding any stricken information.
x) Motion to sequester may be submitted by either party during the discovery phase of trial. Motions to sequester seeks to find whether the witness in question should be isolated from the courtroom until such a time that they shall be called. Motions to sequester may only be approved if constitutionally permissible. Upon approval, the witness in question shall be sequestered from the courtroom and hidden from any chats or speech in the courtroom until they are called to testify.
xi) Motion to compel may be submitted by either party during any phase of trial. Motions to compel seeks to find whether an individual or entity should be compelled to conduct a specific action. Motions to compel shall include requests for subpoenas, court orders, and other related actions which the court is legally and constitutionally authorized to compel for. Upon approval, the entity or individual in question shall be compelled to conduct the specified action as prescribed by law, the Constitution, and these rules.
RULE 7 - Voir Dire How Taken
a) Voir dire shall be recognized and shall consist of the following order:
i) Random selection of eligible citizens from the audience or from those from a pre-selected list selected as potential jurors.
ii) Potential Jurors shall be sequestered upon entering and remaining in courtroom and
throughout the trial in which they are a party to.
iii) Potential Jurors take oath of honesty and questioned by presiding officer.
- The presiding officer shall question the juror as to the basic requisites of jury duty (as defined by law and these rules).
iv) Potential Jurors questioned by both parties.
v) Parties present proposed potential juror dismissal(s) to the judge to finalize the jury.
b) There shall be no peremptory challenges in any regards and no juror shall be dismissed solely due to their sex, race, national origin, or age.
i) A party may petition the judge to dismiss a juror due to:
conflict of interest;
or other good cause.
c) Upon being dismissed by the presiding officer, the potential juror shall no longer be considered a potential juror.
i) If a potential juror is dismissed and thus causes the number of potential jurors to fall below the minimum mandated number then another potential juror shall be selected.
- After the selection of a new potential juror that juror shall go through the same process as the rest of the potential jurors.
ii) If, at the end of voir dire, the number of potential jurors is above the number of maximum allowed by law, the judge shall randomly dismiss potential jurors until the number is at the maximum allowed by law.
d) Either party may waive their right to be present or question the potential jurors.
i) Upon such waivure the party shall so inform the presiding officer.
e) When both parties submit no more proposed cuts and the judge finds no need to release any more potential jurors, the presiding officer shall empanel the jury.
i) After empanelling the jury, the judge shall record the names (and other information about the jurors) of the jurors in the manner prescribed by law.
RULE 8 - Sentencing How Taken
a) The presiding officer shall, if the verdict rendered was “guilty” (otherwise, if the verdict was “not guilty”, the presiding officer shall release the defendant), hold a sentencing hearing. Such a
hearing shall consist of the following order:
i) Statement on the views of the plaintiff regarding the defendant’s sentence.
ii) Statement on the views of the defendant regarding sentence.
iii) Victim impact statement (only in criminal matters).
iv) Handing down of the sentence.
b) The statements may be waived by either party. The victim impact statement may either be waived by the prosecution or the victim.
c) No sentence shall be cruel or unusual.
d) The judge shall notify the parties, upon the handing down of the sentence, of their right to appeal. The presiding officer shall make themselves available to answer any questions that a party might have about the appeals process.
RULE 9 - Appeals How Taken
i) An appeal shall only be filed with a court of superior and competent jurisdiction over the inferior court whose decision is the subject of the appeal.
- Such an appeal shall be filed in the same manner as set forth in rule 2.
ii) When filed, an appeal shall contain:
The petitioner’s full ROBLOX username.
Easiest way to contact the petitioner.
Counsel for the petitioner (if present).
Full ROBLOX username of the respondent (unless the respondent is the State/Department of Justice).
Link to the decision being appealed.
Grounds for the appeal.
Anything else which is relevant to the matter.
iii) The appeal itself shall be regarded as a petition for a writ of certiorari.
Only upon the concurrence of a majority of the appellate court petitioned to may the petition be granted.
Upon the writ being granted, the superior court hearing the matter shall request from the inferior court the record of any proceedings in the matter.
Upon the writ being denied any stays issued in the matter shall be regarded as null unless so stated otherwise by the denying court.
(a) A stay may only be kept post denial upon a finding of good cause by the superior court.
i) A stay may be issued by a member of a court of superior and competent jurisdiction.
Such a stay may only be issued if a party would be irreparably harmed by the continuance of the proceedings/sentence or for some other good cause.
A stay may be voided by the majority of the court.
(a) Solely for the overturning of the stay, the rest of the court shall be considered a ‘superior court’ under rule 11.
c) Oral Arguments
i) A superior court, upon granting the writ, may choose to conduct oral arguments. The time limit of these arguments may be adjusted by the court; however, no time limit shall be set so low as to attempt to deny due process to the parties involved.
ii) During the arguments the following shall occur in any order:
Argument of the petitioner.
Argument of the respondent.
Argument of Amicus Curiae (if present).
iii) During the argument of any party, any judge on the court reviewing the matter may ask questions to the party arguing.
i) Petition Stage
The petition stage brief shall be regarded as a party’s (or amicus curiae’s) opinion on if the matter in question should be heard by the court and must be submitted before a decision on whether to grant the writ of certiorari is made public.
Such a brief may only cover why a court should (or shouldn’t) hear the matter.
ii) Merits Stage
The merits stage brief shall be regarded as a party’s (or amicus curiae’s) opinion on how the court should rule. Such a brief shall only include relevant information.
Such a brief may only be submitted after the decision on whether to issue the writ of certiorari is made public and before the decision by the court is made public.
i) The superior court reviewing the matter may rule at any time on any matter having granted a writ of certiorari.
ii) Any such decision shall only be released after any dissents from members of the ruling court are furnished and attached with the majority opinion.
iii) Upon the releasing of a decision the court shall notify all of the parties involved and make a copy of the opinion made available to the general public.
iv) A decision is considered to be made if a simple majority of the members of the court agree on a course of action.
v) If the court is deadlocked as to the course of action to take, they shall affirm the judgement of the lower court.
f) Amicus Curiae
i) Any entity may be admitted as Amicus Curiae.
ii) No motion shall be necessary to be admitted as an Amicus Curiae however a motion, after being affirmed by a majority of the court, is required in order for an amicus to participate in oral argument.
iii) Only the Solicitor General, Attorney General, or the applicable equivalent shall be permitted to represent the views of the state.
g) The relevant courts are authorized to establish local rules, only subject to that court. These rules shall not supersede these rules or any State law, but may elaborate on them. The rules shall enter effect upon unanimous agreement of all justices of the relevant court, and shall be annulled if any one of the justices disagrees with any part of the rules.
RULE 10 - Supreme Court Special Proceedings
a) Any member of the Supreme Court may file a judicial review. A petition for judicial review may be filed by any person.
i) Such a review shall be treated like a petition for a writ of certiorari.
ii) The filing judge need not invoke rule 11 solely due to his filing the petition.
iii) The court may designate special Amicus Curiae to argue specific view points.
iv) The decision rendered shall be considered as binding as if it were rendered due to an appeal.
RULE 11 - Judicial Recusal
a) No judge may not be a witness or party to a matter that they are presiding over.
b) A judge shall recuse themselves from any matter in which:
i) There is a conflict of interest;
ii) or other good cause.
c) A judge shall not preside over a matter which involves (or any party related to the matter of hand is a member of) a department, agency, or other business entity in which him/herself is currently employed or in which they (the judge) has not been separated from for more than three month’s time. This shall not include the prosecutor of a criminal case prosecuted by the Department of Justice, nor shall it include a matter where a member of the court itself is a party (unless the party is the justice themselves).
d) When a judge recuses themselves, they shall note such and the reason for recusal.
e) After a judge has recused themselves from a matter, they shall not hear the matter as a judge at any time forward.
i) A recusal may be taken back should it be found that no conflict of interest or other good cause existed. Otherwise, it may not be taken back.
f) A judge shall not hear and rule on a case in an inferior court and then hear and rule upon the same case in a superior court.
RULE 12 - Judicial Supremacy
a) The state courts shall be superior to all courts enacted by governments inferior to that of the state.
b) The state courts shall be authorized to try all matters relating to any government, or its laws, that is inferior to that of the state government.
i) This clause shall not affect the state court’s existing or original jurisdiction.
RULE 13 - Grounds of Appeal
a) The parties in a case may appeal the ruling of an inferior court to a superior court only if:
i) There was an error made by the district court (or inferior court) that violated the constitution, laws, due process, or these rules;
ii) the presiding officer had a conflict of interest and refused to recuse;
iii) or other good cause.
RULE 14 - Expungement Petition Recognized
a) A person may petition for a court of original jurisdiction to seal from the public record the
conviction, arrest, or citation of the petitioner.
b) The petition shall contain:
i) The username of the petitioner.
ii) The name of the petitioner’s counsel (if present).
iii) Easiest way to contact the petitioner.
iv) The records requesting to be sealed.
v) The reasoning for the request.
c) The courts may only seal a record if one of the following criteria is met:
i) The record was issued unlawfully, including falsely, with an invalid penalty, or any other factor invalidating the record at the discretion of the court.
(1) An officer wishing to “drop charges” shall not constitute an unlawful record. The petitioner must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the record is unlawful.
ii) The record has exceeded the amount of time prescribed in Rule 15c.ii) clauses 1, 2, 3, and 4, AND the petitioner shows little to no chance of violating the law in the future, AND the petitioner is not currently associated nor have they been associated with any criminal organization 90 days prior to the date of filing.
(1) For any traffic infraction, 15 days shall have passed.
(2) For any other misdemeanor citation, misdemeanor arrest, or an undefined severity record, 30 days shall have passed.
(3) For any felony, except as listed in Clause 4, 60 days shall have passed.
(4) For any felony conviction or crimes which are perceived to be a major threat to state security (as to be interpreted by the presiding officer), 120 days shall have passed.
iii) Any other extremely good cause (as to be interpreted by the presiding officer).
(1) Extremely good cause shall not include expungements based off of popularity, the community’s desire for a record to be expunged, or the presiding officer’s belief a conviction issued by another court is false.
d) The petitioner shall present the petition in the same way that a complaint is submitted. See rule 2.
e) The Attorney General, or their designee, shall be granted the opportunity to contest any expungement petitioned for. It shall, however, be the Department of Justice’s obligation to declare their intent to contest an expungement upon its submission. Should the Attorney General be the petitioner, their designee shall have the right to contest the expungement of the Attorney General without repercussions, and vice versa. The Attorney General must designate a designee in these scenarios. If the Attorney General fails to do so, the Deputy Attorney General or, where vacant or on absence, the individual immediately next in the chain-of-command shall be the designee.
f) No record for an arrest nor citation may be cleared without a lawful expungement having been granted for the said record. Should a justice clear a record without a lawful expungement having been granted, it shall be considered “Illegally Removing Records”.
i) In cases of ‘False Arrest’, ‘False Citation’, or any type of under/over punishing (as prescribed by law), where the defendant is found guilty, Rule 14(f) shall not apply.
ii) Illegally Removing Records shall be considered a felony offense, only punishable by the courts. Should one be convicted of “Illegally Removing Records”, they shall have a sentencing time of no less than one (1) hour, but no more than three (3) hours within the State Corrections Facility.
RULE 15 - Evidence Admission How Taken
a) Tangible evidence must be able to definitively link the person(s) shown to the accounts that are alleged to be in the evidence.
b) All evidence that is to be presented at a trial shall be admitted during the discovery period.
i) Such admission is to only be approved by the presiding officer.
ii) Evidence may be submitted midtrial upon a motion to admit evidence being approved before the closing statements and after discovery has concluded; such a motion may only be submitted by the defendant. The court shall enter a mandatory recess of at least twenty-four (24) hours after the approval of such a motion.
c) No evidence may be admitted if was obtained unlawfully. An exception to this rule can be made if it can be proven that it would have inevitably been found.
i) No evidence may be admitted if it was found by the use of other evidence (which was obtained unlawfully). An exception to this rule shall be made if the original evidence is admitted or permitted to be admitted.