Motions for Reconsideration

by Amanda Maenner on August 24, 2010

Almost always when parties go to court and the judge makes his or her decision, someone will not be happy with the results.   That is why it is preferred by the court that parties resolve their disputes without needing its involvement.  What can be done if you are the party that is not happy?

In motions made in family court, if a party does not like the results of an order, they are able to request via letter a Motion for Reconsideration (Rule 115.11 of the General Rules of Practice).  The letter must not exceed 2 pages in length and must describe compelling circumstances that exist as to why the order was wrong.  If the court agrees with the reasoning set out in the letter, they may either just issue an amended order or allow the party that wrote the letter to bring a motion to reconsider the previous order and be heard by the court.

Motions for reconsideration are not often successful.  The judge is deliberate in the decisions that are issued, and you are not able to bring new information that you previously had to the court through your motion to reconsider.  The high standard of needing compelling circumstances provides some validity to orders that are issued by the court.  Parties are able to rely on an order being enforceable and can have some finality to the issue that was brought before the court.  If there is new information that has been found since the parties appeared in court, it may be appropriate to bring an entirely new motion on the subject.

Previous post:

Next post: