More than 2,300 public comments were submitted, and more than 120 witnesses testified at three public hearings on the proposed amendments to Rules 1, 4, 6, 16, 26, 30, 31, 33, 34, 36, 37, 55, 84, and Appendix of Forms of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that were published on August 15, 2013. Attorneys at the Center for Constitutional Litigation, P.C. (“CCL”) attended all three public hearings, reviewed the transcripts, and reviewed all of the written comments on the proposed amendments.

Today CCL released the summary of its Preliminary Report on the comments on the proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure: The Comments by the Numbers. The summary estimates of the number of written comments and witnesses who testified, and which proposals they supported or opposed. The overwhelming majority of the written commentary opposed most of the proposed amendments. There was a particularly large amount of opposition to the proposed changes to the scope of discovery and to the presumptive numeric limits on discovery devices. The majority of the comments on the proposed reduction in time for service, the proposed explicit authorization of allocation of discovery costs, and the proposed abrogation of Rule 84 and most of the Official Forms opposed those proposals. The opposition to these proposals did not come only from plaintiffs’ lawyers and organizations of plaintiffs’ lawyers, but from a large number of academics, several current and former federal judges, numerous legal aid providers, civil rights groups, consumer rights groups, and from members of Congress.

The Advisory Committee meets April 10-11, 2014 in Portland, Oregon to decide whether to recommend that the rules be adopted. The Agenda Book for the meeting is here.

CCL’s summary (corrected 4/10/14) is here. The Preliminary Report will be posted when it is released.