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Information on Ex Parte (Emergency) Motions

In our judicial system all parties to a case have the right and opportunity to present their side of the dispute to the judge through the filing of written pleadings (motions and objections) and in person during court hearings. In other words, under normal circumstances, the judge will not issue any orders unless all parties to the case have had a chance to tell their side of the story.

For a judge to issue an order without notice to the other side (known as ex parte , or emergency, relief) circumstances must exist which pose a real risk that irreparable harm will result if the judge does not take immediate action without hearing from all sides to the dispute. The facts presented in a pleading (motion or petition) requesting ex parte (emergency) relief must convince the judge that unless this extraordinary order is issued, harm will result that cannot be remedied. The harm could be immediate physical violence, or that delay will cause a person or property to be moved out of the jurisdiction of the court or a similar circumstance. People seeking ex parte (emergency) relief must swear under oath that the facts alleged in their motion are true and that these facts justify the issuance of such an extraordinary order.

If an ex parte order is issued, the person against whom the order is issued is promptly given notice and an opportunity to object to the motion and emergency order issued by the judge and a hearing is set quickly so that all sides of the case can be heard by the judge before making a final order.

For Circuit Court Divorce and Parenting cases see NH Circuit Court Rule 2.9 (B) 

For Superior Court Civil Attachment matters see Superior Court Rule 47 (effective October 1, 2013)