The proposed amendments to Rules 4(b) and 4(l)(3)(H) addresses a problem that arises frequently with the increase of self-representation that courts do not have proper contact information for self-represented defendants. These amendments require the plaintiff to include with the summons a blank Notice of Appearance form. Self-represented defendants must complete the form to provide contact information to the court and to comply with V.R.C.P. 79.1(d).
The proposed amendment to Rule 5(h) also addresses a problem resulting from the increase in self-represented parties, who are unfamiliar with the service requirement of V.R.C.P. 5(a). This amendment requires the parties to file a certificate of service when filing any document with the court.
The proposed amendments to Form 1 and Form 1B alert a self-represented defendant that he or she must complete and file Form 28 (Notice of Appearance for Self-Represented Litigant). The proposed amendment of Form 1C (Waiver of Service of Summons) provides for submission of Form 28. Proposed Form 29 is a Certificate of Service.
The Comment period ended on August 13, 2014.