July 25, 2019 Top Story

U.S. Supreme Court: Rule 23(f) Not Subject to Equitable Tolling

Rule is nonjurisdictional, but its text clearly forbids tolling

By Catherine M. Chiccine

Rule 23(f) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure is not subject to equitable tolling, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held.

The rule permits appeals if a petition for permission to appeal is filed within 14 days after the order is entered

The rule permits appeals if a petition for permission to appeal is filed within 14 days after the order is entered

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The rule permits appeals from orders granting or denying class certification if a petition for permission to appeal is filed within 14 days after the order is entered. While the Court found the rule is a waivable nonjurisdictional claim processing rule, the clear text of the rule leaves no room for flexibility. The ruling stands as a warning to practitioners not to rely on equitable tolling instead of deadlines set forth in procedural rules.

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