Rule 12. Scheduling of hearings; pre-hearing conferences.
(A) Except as otherwise provided by this rule, all arbitrations shall take place and all awards must be filed no later than 6 months from the date of the arbitrator’s appointment. Arbitrators shall set the time and date of the hearing within this period.
(B) The arbitration hearing date may be advanced or continued by the arbitrator for good cause upon written request from either party. The arbitrator may not grant a request for a continuance of the hearing beyond a period of 9 months from the date of the arbitrator’s appointment without written permission from the commissioner. Any such request for permission for an extension beyond the 9-month period must be made in writing to the commissioner by the arbitrator. The commissioner may permit such an extension upon a showing of unusual circumstances. All arbitration hearings must take place within one year of the date on which the arbitrator is appointed.
(1) Arbitration hearings which take place in violation of this Rule may subject the parties, their counsel, and/or the arbitrator to sanctions which can include:
(a) loss or reduction of the arbitrator’s fee;
(b) temporary suspension of the arbitrator from the panel;
(c) monetary sanctions assessed against the parties or counsel.
(2) Additionally, if the arbitration hearing does not take place within one year of the appointment of the arbitrator, the case may be subject to dismissal or entry of default.
(C) Consolidated actions shall be heard on the date assigned to the latest case involved, to be heard by the earliest appointed arbitrator.
(D) Arbitrators or the commissioner may, at their discretion, conduct pre-arbitration hearings or conferences. However, the pre-hearing conference required by Rule 11 must be conducted within 30 days from the date a case is assigned to an arbitrator.
(E) The arbitrator shall give immediate written notification to the commissioner of the arbitration date and any change thereof, any settlement or any change of counsel.
[Added; effective July 1, 1992; amended effective January 1, 2005.]