Delaware Docket Newsletter
Fall 2013

We are pleased to present the Fall 2013 issue of the Delaware Docket, the Newsletter of the Delaware Judiciary, which is published semi-annually to provide updates on activities and events in the Judicial community. All are welcome to suggest topics, contribute articles for future editions, and provide suggestions on the newsletter. Please use the links below to navigate the current issue or view the printable pdf version .

Patricia Griffin, State Court Administrator and Managing Editor
Amy Quinlan, Deputy State Court Director and Articles Editor
Connie Magee, Executive Assistant and Layout Editor

Featured Stories

Chief Justice Myron T. Steele
Supreme Court Chief Justice Myron T. Steele will retire on Nov. 30, 2013 after serving 25 years on the Delaware bench. Appointed Chief Justice in 2004, he joined the Supreme Court as a Justice in 2000 and previously served on both the Superior Court and the Court of Chancery.

A Fond Farewell to Roylene Marvel
From the beginning, Roylene Marvel, Judicial Assistant to Chief Justice Steele, remembers wanting to be a legal secretary -- Della Street of Perry Mason fame to be exact. Born and raised in California, Roylene fed her love of the law by attending a local business school where she honed her skills as a legal assistant taking a job with a California law firm after graduation.

Governor Markell Recognizes Chief Justice Steele at the Conference of Chief Justices
At the invitation of Chief Justice Myron T. Steele, Delaware Governor Jack Markell gave a luncheon address at the Conference of Chief Justices (CCJ)'s Annual Meeting on July 30, 2013 in Burlington, Vermont. The CCJ is comprised of the top judicial officer of each state, commonwealth, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories.

Superior Court Establishes Listserv
Members of the public and the legal community can now subscribe to the Superior Court Listserv to receive e-mailed notification of Superior Court's Orders & Opinions, Administrative Directives, Order and Plans, e-Litigation, News, and more.

Court Security Personnel Receive Training on Workplace Violence
Training on preventing and mitigating workplace violence, with an emphasis on dealing with active shooter attacks, was presented to 118 court security personnel and Capitol Police officers in two day-long sessions held October 24 and October 25, 2013.

Delaware Representatives Participate in National Courthouse Violence Project
On August 22, 2013, the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) conducted a two-day meeting in Denver, Colorado with representatives from six states who have encountered serious violent incidents in their courthouses in the last two years.

Family Court Judiciary Hosts Prominent Faculty for Technology Training
Family Court Judges and Commissioners completed their third training session on issues related to electronically stored information ("ESI") on September 12, 2013. This session, entitled "Challenges and Benefits of Technology in Achieving Justice," was led by Judge Ralph Artigliere, Judge Paul W. Grimm, and Kevin Brady, Esquire.

Jurisdiction to Certify Questions of Delaware Law to the Delaware Supreme Court Expanded
The Delaware Supreme Court recently amended its Rule 41 to reflect the constitutional amendment, enacted in June 2013, authorizing the United States Bankruptcy Courts to certify questions of Delaware law to the Delaware Supreme Court prior to the entry of final judgment in a case if (1) there is an important reason for immediate determination of the question, and (2) the certifying court has not yet decided the question in the case.

Family Court Judge Takes on Issues Faced by Youth Aging Out of Foster Care System
On May 6, 2013, Family Court Chief Judge Chandlee Johnson Kuhn and Judges Peter Jones and Barbara Crowell traveled to Washington, D.C., to join with child welfare officials from around the country and youth who have experienced foster care to help launch the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, Success Beyond 18.

Support for New Community Court Initiative
The Justice of the Peace Court's work towards establishing the State's first Community Court continues. The proposed new court will combine two existing Justice of the Peace Courts into one location within the City of Wilmington and introduce community court principles in the new court building.

Visitors Tour Kent County Courthouse Courtroom No. 1
The Kent County Courthouse Courtroom No. 1 was recently added as one of the many fascinating historical stops on the First State Heritage Park Trail at Dover.   The park is Delaware's first urban "park without boundaries" and includes historic and cultural sites in the city.

Courthouse Wireless Access: You Are Now Free to Move About the Courthouse
The Judicial Information Center announced on September 26, 2013 that wireless Internet access has been established for all major courthouses statewide (New Castle County Courthouse, Kent County Courthouse, Sussex County Courthouse, and Kent and Sussex Family Court Courthouses).

The Justice of the Peace Court Rolls Out New Pretrial Risk Assessment Tool
The Justice of the Peace Court will begin using the pretrial risk assessment tool developed in response to Senate Bill 226, which was enacted on August 8, 2012.

Delaware Capitol Police Participate in Security Exercise at Kent County Courthouse
On July 24, 2013, Delaware Capitol Police participated in a joint security exercise with the Dover Police Department and SWAT Team, the Delaware Department of Correction and the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Team, and Kent County Superior Court bailiffs.

Delaware Judiciary Recognized

Delaware Takes Home Prestigious Awards from MAACM
On October 1, 2013, the Administrative Office of the Courts' Court Interpreter Program received the 2013 John Neufeld Court Achievement Award.

Summer Youth Volunteer Program Celebrates Five Years
Established in 2009 by Robin Jenkins, Manager of Support Services at the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), the Summer Youth Volunteer Program (SYVP) celebrated its fifth successful year this past summer.

Supreme Court Creates Innovative Commission of Law and Technology
On July 1, 2013, the Delaware Supreme Court created a new Arm of the Court, the Commission on Law and Technology (Commission), the first of its kind nationwide.

Delaware Supreme Court Launches Free Online Access to Video Recorded Proceedings
The Supreme Court recently updated its website to provide additional content to the public.

Innovative Cross-Court Project Offers Trauma Informed Approach to Justice-Involved Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault Victims
A project to offer a trauma-informed approach for justice-involved victims of domestic violence or sexual assault, the Victim Advocacy and Safety Enhancement Project (VASE), recently opened in New Castle County Superior Court Mental Health Court and the Court of Common Pleas Trauma Informed Probation Court (TIP Court).

Delaware Supreme Court Establishes Delaware Access to Justice Commission
The Delaware Supreme Court entered an Order on November 13, 2013 establishing a Delaware Access to Justice Commission effective as of January 1, 2014.

Hablas español?
The Limited Legal Assistance Program (LLAP) has been providing unrepresented litigants with assistance on family law matters for the past several years.

Register of Wills Joins the Court of Chancery in eFiling Initiatives
Working with the Court of Chancery, the Register of Wills offices have been moving incrementally to electronic filing of documents on a statewide basis.

Justice of the Peace Court Selected to Participate in National Procedural Fairness Training Program
The Justice of the Peace Court was recently selected as one of three sites in the nation to receive training from the Center for Court Innovation entitled, "Enhancing Procedural Fairness."

Court of Chancery Transfers Guardianship Monitored Program to the Office of the Public Guardian
The Court of Chancery adopted Rule 180-D (effective October 1, 2013) to address the transfer of the Guardianship Monitoring Program from the Court of Chancery ("Court") to the Office of Public Guardian ("OPG").