In February of 2013, the Supreme Court of Texas issued Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 169, which designs a streamlined and expedited trial process for cases valued below $100,000 (excluding actions under the Family Code, Property Code, or Tax Code).  It applies to cases filed after 1 March 2013.  Per the new rule, on a party’s request, the court is required to set a trial date within 90 days after the discovery period ends.  (Under the Texas rules, the discovery period ends 180 days after the date the first request for discovery of any kind is served on a party.)  Rule 169 also calls for limitations on discovery (eg, a maximum of 15 written interrogatories and requests for production) and permits each side “eight hours to complete jury selection, opening statements, presentation of evidence, examination and cross-examination of witnesses, and closing arguments.”  Additionally, unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the court may refer the case to an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) procedure.  The ADR cannot exceed a half-day in length, and its cost cannot exceed twice the amount of the applicable civil filing fees (approximately US$200-$400).  The ADR must conclude at least 60 days before trial.