ARFLP Rule 83. Motion for New Trial or Amended Judgment

A.  Grounds. A ruling, decision or judgment may be altered or amended, or vacated and a new trial granted, on motion of the aggrieved party for any of the following causes materially affecting that party’s rights:

1.  irregularity in the proceedings of the court or a party, or abuse of discretion, whereby the moving party was deprived of a fair trial;

2.  misconduct of a party;

3.  accident or surprise which could not have been prevented by ordinary prudence;

4.  material evidence, newly discovered, which with reasonable diligence could not have been discovered and produced at the trial;

5.  error in the admission or rejection of evidence or other errors of law occurring at the trial or during the progress of the action;

6.  that the ruling, decision, findings of fact, or judgment is not justified by the evidence or is contrary to law.

B.  Scope. A ruling, decision or judgment may be altered or amended, or a new trial may be granted to all or any of the parties and on all or part of the issues for any reasons for which new trials are authorized by law or rule of court. On a motion for new trial, the court may open the judgment, if one has been entered, take additional testimony, amend or alter findings of fact and conclusions of law or make new findings and conclusions, and direct the entry of a new ruling, decision or judgment.

C.  Contents of Motion; Amendment; Rulings Reviewable.

1.  The motion for new trial shall be in writing, shall specify generally the grounds upon which the motion is based, and may be amended at any time before it is ruled upon by the court.

2.  Upon the general ground that the court erred in admitting or rejecting evidence, the court shall review all rulings during the trial upon objections to evidence.

3.  Upon the general ground that the decision, findings of fact, or judgment is not justified by the evidence, the court shall review the sufficiency of the evidence.

D.  Procedure for Filing Motion for New Trial; New Trials Granted.

1.  Time for Motion. A motion for new trial shall be filed not later than fifteen (15) days after entry of the judgment.

2.  Time for serving affidavits. When a motion for new trial is based upon affidavits they shall be served with the motion. The opposing party has ten (10) days after such service within which to serve opposing affidavits, which period may be extended for an additional period not exceeding twenty (20) days either by the court for good cause shown or by the parties by written stipulation. The court may permit reply affidavits.

3.  Number of new trials. Not more than two (2) new trials shall be granted to either party in the same action.

4.  Specification of grounds for new trial in order. No order granting a new trial shall be made and entered unless the order specifies with particularity the grounds on which the new trial is granted.

E.  New Trial Ordered On Initiative of Court. Not later than fifteen (15) days after entry of judgment the court of its own initiative may order a new trial for any reason for which it might have granted a new trial on motion of a party. After giving the parties notice and an opportunity to be heard on the matter, the court may grant a motion for a new trial, timely served, for a reason not stated in the motion. In either case, the court shall specify in the order the grounds therefore.

F.  Questions to Be Considered in New Trial. A new trial, if granted, shall be only a new trial of the question or questions with respect to which the decision is found erroneous, if separable.

G.  After Service by Publication.

1.  When judgment has been rendered on service by publication, and the respondent has not appeared, a new trial may be granted upon application of the respondent for good cause shown by affidavit, made within one (1) year after rendition of the judgment.

2.  Execution of the judgment shall not be stayed, except on motion of the party or the court’s own motion and order of the court. The court may require the respondent to give a bond in an amount set by the court to assure that the party will prosecute the application for a new trial and will satisfy such judgment as may be rendered by the court should its decision be against the respondent.