Local Rules and Select Appendices
The rules of procedure in any proceeding in this court are those prescribed by the laws of the United States and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, along with these local rules and any orders entered by the court. These local rules shall be construed as consistent with Acts of Congress and rules of practice and procedure prescribed by the Supreme Court of the United States and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

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SECTION I: CIVIL RULES >> View All Local Rules

LOCAL RULE CV-79 Records Kept by the Clerk

(a) Submission of Hearing/Trial Exhibits.

(1) The parties shall not submit exhibits to the clerk's office prior to a hearing/trial without an order of the court. The clerk shall return to the party any physical exhibits not complying with this rule.

(2) Exhibits shall be properly marked but not placed in binders. Multiple-paged documentary exhibits should be properly fastened. Additional copies of exhibits may be submitted in binders for the court's use.

(3) The parties shall provide letter-sized copies of any documentary, physical, or oversized exhibit to the court prior to the conclusion of a hearing/trial. At the conclusion of a hearing/trial, the parties shall provide the courtroom deputy with PDF copies of all exhibits that were admitted by the court, unless otherwise ordered. Oversized exhibits will be returned at the conclusion of the trial or hearing. If parties desire the oversized exhibits to be sent to the appellate court, it will be their responsibility to send them.

(b) Disposition of Exhibits by the Clerk. Thirty days after any direct appeal has been exhausted or the time for taking that appeal has lapsed, and no further action is required by the trial court, the clerk is authorized to destroy any sealed or unsealed exhibits which have not been previously claimed by the attorney of record for the party offering the same in evidence at the hearing/trial.

(c) Hazardous Documents or Items Sent to the Court. Prisoners and other litigants shall not send to this court (including the district clerk, any judges, and any other court agency) documents or items that constitute a health hazard as defined below:

(1) The clerk is authorized to routinely and immediately dispose of, without seeking a judge's permission, any papers or items sent to the court by prisoners or other litigants that are smeared with or contain blood, hair, food, feces, urine, or other body fluids. Although "[t]he clerk shall not refuse to accept for filing any paper presented for that purpose solely because it is not presented in proper form," Fed. R. Civ. P. 5(e), papers or other items containing or smeared with excrement or body fluids can be excepted from this rule on the ground that they constitute a health hazard to court employees and can be refused by the clerk for that reason, which is a reason other than improper form.

(2) In the event the clerk receives weapons or drugs that are intended to be filed as exhibits, the clerk shall notify the judge assigned to the case of that fact, or in the event that no case has been filed, the chief judge.

(3) The clerk shall maintain a log of the items that are disposed of pursuant to General Order 96-6. The log shall contain the case number and style, if any, the name of the prisoner or litigant who sent the offending materials, and a brief description of the item disposed of. The clerk also shall notify the prisoner/litigant and, if applicable, the warden or other supervising official of the appropriate correction facility that the item in question was destroyed and that sanctions may be imposed if the prisoner continues to forward papers, items, or physical exhibits in violation of General Order 96-6.