The Chief Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court has ordered a period of public comment until January 15, 2013, after rescinding a previous administrative order amending § 7-208(F) of the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration (A.C.J.A.) that could have been interpreted to prohibit Certified Legal Document Preparers (CLDPs) from executing Preliminary 20-Day Notices under A.R.S. § 33-992.01.

On November 21, 2012, the Chief Justice entered Administrative Order No. 2012-85 (Order 2012-85), which provided that CLDPs may continue to file, record, and arrange for service of legal forms, but are not authorized to sign any documents for their customers as an “authorized representative” or “legal agent.”

Because Order 2012-85 could have been interpreted to prohibit CLDPs from signing Preliminary 20-Day Notices, mechanic’s liens, or other legal documents often used in the construction industry, thereby greatly increasing the burden and costs to contractors, subcontractors, materials suppliers, design professionals or any others who use lien service companies to prepare these documents, and hampering, if not potentially destroying, the industry of lien service companies, it was rescinded in order to allow the public to comment regarding whether CLDPs should (a) continue to be allowed to draft, execute, or serve Preliminary 20-Day Notices, and (b) be allowed to execute liens.

Order 2012-85 was rescinded by Administrative Order No. 2012-94, which provided that the Certification and Licensing Division of the Administrative Office of the Courts, which supervises the activities of CLDPs, must solicit public comment on the proposed amendments to A.C.J.A. § 7-208 until January 15, 2013.

If you wish to comment, the Certification and Licensing Division has provided a forum. Additional information can be found here.