Rule 1910.25-4. Civil Contempt. Alternative Procedure. Record Hearing. Report. Exceptions. Order.
(a) At the conclusion of the conference if an agreement has not been reached, the parties shall be given notice of the date, time, and place of a hearing if the conference and hearing have not been scheduled for the same date. The hearing on the record shall be conducted by a hearing officer who must be a lawyer.
Every effort should be made to ensure that cases are heard promptly, on the same day if possible.
(b) The hearing officer shall receive evidence, hear argument and file with the court a report containing a proposed order. A copy of the report shall be furnished to all parties at the conclusion of the hearing. The report may be in narrative form and shall include the officers recommendation with respect to the following matters, together with the reasons therefor:
(1) whether the respondent has willfullly failed to comply with the order for support,
(2) whether the respondent should be held in contempt, and
(3) whether sanctions or purge conditions should be imposed against the respondent.
The sanction of imprisonment may be imposed only following an evidentiary hearing before a judge. See Rule 1910.25-5(a).
(c) Within twenty days after the conclusion of the hearing, any party may file exceptions to the report or any part thereof, to rulings on objections, to statements or findings of fact, to conclusions of law, or to any other matters occurring during the hearing. Each exception shall set forth a separate objection precisely and without discussion. Matters not covered by exceptions are deemed waived unless, prior to the entry of the order, leave is granted to file exceptions raising those matters.
(d) If no exceptions are filed within the twenty-day period, the court shall review the report and, if approved, enter an order.
(e) If exceptions are filed, the court shall, no later than seventy-five days after the date the petition for contempt was filed, hear argument on the exceptions or hold a hearing de novo. The court shall enter an appropriate order.
The provisions of this Rule 1910.25-4 adopted May 31, 2000, effective July 1, 2000, 30 Pa.B. 3155; amended June 11, 2007, effective immediately, 37 Pa.B. 2800. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (267753) to (267754).
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