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Judge Cynthia L Ebner
375 South High Street
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Courtroom 13A
Elected 2015
Courtroom 13A
Secretary Tonya Young (614) 645-8206
Bailiff Judy Schneider (614) 645-8698
Fax (614) 645-7803

Commencement of Action and General Procedures

General It is important to remember that this is the “People’s Court”. Our goal is to run the courtroom in a relaxed but professional atmosphere. All persons shall show respect for the law, parties, counsel, deputies and staff. Considering the number of cases that come through our courtroom on a daily basis, it is important that the parties, attorneys and all other persons involved with the court are willing to discuss the matters with a goal of efficient resolution of cases.
Decorum Proper courtroom etiquette observed. Everyone is treated in a respectful and courteous manner making the courtroom a place where all parties feel justice is being served. The Court requests the litigants, counsel for the parties and the witnesses be respectful to one another and to the other parties in the courtroom. Counsel should ask permission to approach not only the Court but the witness as well. As for courtroom attire, no shorts or t-shirts allowed nor are hats, sunglasses, head bands, food or liquid beverages and cell phones. Exceptions will be made for religious clothing.
Continuances It is the Court’s practice that continuances and extensions will be granted, if reasonably possible, with the understanding that all cases should be resolved within the time frames and guidelines of the Rules of Superintendence. Requests for continuances must be presented to the Court a minimum of five (5) business days prior to the court date. Opposing parties to be contacted prior to the submission to the court regarding the request.

Agreed requests are preferred. Motions to continue must specify 1) the reason for the continuance, 2) whether the continuance is agreed or opposed, and 3) the length of time needed.

Criminal Pretrial Procedures

General Criminal and traffic cases are automatically set for pretrial after a jury demand is filed. If a court demand is filed initially, a court trial will be scheduled at 8:30 a.m. Criminal defendants are to be present unless their counsel has a Plea in Absentia form executed by his/her client.
Discovery The Court encourages the prosecutor to meet with the opposing counsel to discuss the case(s) and exchange any discovery requested.
Pretrials Conferences and Orders Criminal defendants are to be present at all pre-trials unless otherwise excused by the Court. Counsel should be prepared to discuss their cases with the prosecutor and attempt to resolve the matter at the pre-trial if at all possible. If further advice or counseling is necessary, the Court is available to meet with the parties prior to plea or discuss negotiations prior to possible trial.
Pleas All pleas will be put on the record with a court reporter present or electronic recording. The Court will consider recommendations by counsel concerning plea negotiations and sentencing.

Trial

General This is Municipal Court and the Court may have up to 30 jury trials set on any given day.
Trial Dates Trial dates will be set by the Court/bailiff with the approval of counsel. Trial date continuances will be granted providing it is within rule with approval of both counsels, preferably at least one week prior to trial.
Voir Dire Voir Dire shall be conducted by counsel after a short introduction and questioning by the court. Peremptory challenge procedures are by the rules.
Exhibits Exhibits are to be marked in advance with copies available for the Court and the parties. The originals shall be maintained by the court reporter.
Experts Qualifications of experts should be confirmed in accordance with the law and the local rules.
Use of Videotapes Allowed with prior notice.
Objections By the rules.
Daily Transcripts Not required.
Closing Statements Conference before summation is not required.
Jury Procedures The Court will provide jury instructions with copies to each counsel to review and will make any changes necessary if agreed upon. Depending on the case, jurors may be permitted to take notes. Jurors are permitted to inspect exhibits that have been admitted during deliberation in the jury room. Jurors will be permitted to ask questions in writing during deliberations in accordance with the instructions of the judge. Counsel is permitted to talk with jurors after the verdict is read, upon permission of the Court.

Civil Pretrial Procedures

General The initial pre-trial is set in all civil cases by the Court’s Assignment Office. Additional pre-trials will be set by the Court if deemed reasonable. Cases in which either party is without counsel shall be given the opportunity to have their case sent to the Mediation Department and the parties will then be notified of the date and time of the hearing. All discovery shall be exchanged prior to trial in accordance to the Ohio Rules of Civil Procedure.
Motions and Briefs Motions are to be submitted timely with proposed Entry and served on opposing parties. Motions may be ruled on without oral hearing unless requested by the parties. All Motions to be submitted to the Court at least five (5) days prior to the trial date. All motions will be reviewed and decided in a timely manner with extensions granted for good cause.
Status Conferences Status Conferences are held only if requested by the parties or if the Court deems it necessary. This Court does not conduct conferences or pre-trials over the phone. All parties must be present, unless pre-authorized by the Court.
Settlement Settlement conferences will be held on the day of trial, unless the Court determines that earlier conference is warranted. If the parties feel that a settlement conference would help resolve their case, they should contact the Court and schedule a time with the judge’s bailiff. The Court is available to sit down with counsel to effectuate a settlement to avoid protracted ligation. Counsel should inform the Court immediately upon settling a case. Counsel should not wait until a release has been fully executed or settlement payments have been made to inform the Court of a settlement.
Pretrial Conferences and Orders All parties, with or without counsel, need to be present unless excused by the Court. If the Court approves the absence of either party, the attorney should make sure their client can be reached to facilitate any settlement offer. Counsel are required to confer before the hearing pursuant to Court Rule 6.01 and to make sincere effort to settle the case and to agree on evidentiary matters about which there is no genuine dispute. No telephone pre-trials will be conducted unless authorized by the Court.