Colorado’s Answer to the Local Rules Problem

This Article examines the checkered history of local rules in the state and federal courts. Part I sketches the development of local rule-making power. Part II focuses on the abuses that have resulted from a nonuniform procedural system. It concludes that the most serious consequence of that abuse – an increase in court costs and delay – has not been addressed adequately by the courts. Part III explores ways in which the local rules problem can be brought under control. Although a number of proposals are discussed, the purpose of this section is to present the approach recently undertaken by the state of Colorado as a model for other states seeking to ease the burden of local rules on the practicing bar. It is hoped that a comparison of the Colorado plan with other approaches will provide insight for those legislators and judges around the country interested in implementing local rules reform.