Commercial Docket Pilot Project

gavel and computer with skyscrapers in the backgroundIn April 2017, the Wisconsin Supreme Court approved the creation of a pilot project for dedicated circuit court judicial dockets for large claim commercial cases. The pilot project initially involved qualifying cases filed in Waukesha County and in the circuit courts of the Eighth Judicial Administrative District. In 2020 the pilot project was extended for an additional 2 years and expanded to include Dane County and the circuit courts of the Second and the Tenth Judicial Administrative Districts. The extension also added additional case types to the commercial docket, made clear that it was available for cases in counties or districts that are not included in the pilot project, as well as for cases that do not automatically qualify, if the parties and chief judge agree the case is suitable for the docket.

The commercial docket began on July 1, 2017, and was extended on February 12, 2020 for two additional years. Since the inception of the project, data and comments have been, and will continue to be, gathered from participants and judges. As the extended pilot project ends, the Supreme Court will review the pilot and determine whether it should proceed to a permanent, statewide program.

A commercial docket advisory committee, called the Business Court Advisory Committee that was appointed by Chief Justice Roggensack, provided guidance in creating the pilot. The Committee, consisting of judges, private attorneys, and administrative staff, created a number of new forms and administrative tools to be used during the pilot. Those forms and other helpful links and resources, including commercial docket decisions, are available on this page.

Participating judges will be able to post decisions they issue in commercial docket cases for public review on this page.

Resources

The following documents are in Adobe PDF format unless otherwise indicated.

Required forms

These forms have been developed for use in the Commercial Docket Pilot Project and are required to be used for all cases meeting the requirements of S. Ct. Order 16-05, 2017 WI 33 (issued Apr. 11, 2017, eff. July 1, 2017).

  • CV-950: Commercial Docket Cover SheetWord | Adobe PDF
    To be completed by a plaintiff when filing a qualifying case or by a defendant when filing a responsive pleading.
  • CV-955: Order on Assignment to Commercial DocketWord | Adobe PDF
    To be completed by the assigned judge, ordering that a case has been assigned to the commercial docket.
  • CV-970: Joint Petition for Discretionary Assignment to Commercial DocketWord | Adobe PDF
    To be completed by parties (both the plaintiff and the defendant) from counties that do not have a dedicated trial court judicial docket for large claim business and commercial cases (commercial docket) to have their cases administered within a commercial docket or when the case does not automatically qualify for assignment to the commercial docket but both parties believe the case would be appropriate for assignment to the commercial docket. The petition is made to the Chief Judges for the 2nd, 3rd , 5th, 8th , and 10th Judicial Districts.
  • CV-975: Order on Discretionary Assignment to Commercial DocketWord | Adobe PDF
    To be completed by the chief judge in either the Eighth or Third Judicial District, to whom the parties submitted form CV-970, ordering that a case is assigned to the commercial docket.
  • CV-980: Standing Order for Cases in the Commercial Docket and Scheduling OrderWord | Adobe PDF
    Completed by the assigned judge, setting a scheduling conference for a case assigned to the commercial docket.
  • CV-985: Management Report by Parties and Proposed Scheduling for CaseWord | Adobe PDF
    Completed jointly by the parties and submitted to the assigned judge.
  • CV-986: Order on Proposed Timeline and DiscoveryWord | Adobe PDF
    Completed by the assigned judge, following the submission of form CV-985.
  • Standard Discovery ProtocolPDF
    The provisions are suggested to the parties as a starting point in order to streamline discovery, reduce costs, and engage in meaningful alternative dispute processes as early in the litigation as practicable. The parties may agree to additional or different protocols as long as otherwise permitted by the Court.

Class codes

These class codes should be used for any case meeting one of the definitions below. Cases filed under these class codes may be assigned to the commercial docket. S. Ct. Order 16-05, 2017 WI 33 (issued Apr. 11, 2017, eff. July 1, 2017).

  • 35001 - Internal Business Organizational Claims
    Cases involving the governance or internal affairs of business organizations, including claims between or among owners or constituents of a business organization; claims against officers, directors or managers of a business organization; claims involving the indemnity of owners, officers, directors, or managers of a business organization; claims involving the interpretation of the rights and obligations under the law governing the business organization, such as chs. 178, 179, 180, 181,183, 185, 214, 215, 221, 222, & 223, stats., or any similar statue or law from another jurisdiction; claims involving the interpretation of the rights and obligations under the agreements governing the business organization, such as the articles of incorporation, bylaws, operating agreements, membership agreement, or partnership agreement of the business organization.
  • 35002 - Prohibited Business Activity
    Cases involving tortious or statutorily prohibited business activity, unfair competition or antitrust, including claims under ch. 133, stats.; claims under s.100.30(5m) or (5r), stats.; claims under s.134.01, stats.; claims of tortious interference with a business organization; claims involving restrictive covenants and agreements not to compete or solicit; claims involving confidentiality agreements.
  • 35003 - Business Sale/Consolidation/Merger
    Cases involving the sale, consolidation, or merger of a business organization, conversion, share exchange or the sale of substantially all of the assets of a business organization.
  • 35004 - Sale of Securities
    Cases involving the sale of securities, including claims for securities fraud under ch. 551, stats., or any similar statute or law from another jurisdiction.
  • 35005 - Intellectual Property Rights
    Cases involving intellectual property rights, including claims to determine the use, ownership, or status of trademarks, trade secrets, or copyrights; claims under s.134.90, stats.; claims involving any agreement relating to the licensing of any intellectual property right, including patent rights.
  • 35006 - Franchisor/Franchisee Claim
    Cases involving the relationship between a franchisor and franchisee or similar distribution relationship, including claims arising from ch. 135, stats., or any similar statute from another jurisdiction; claims arising from s.134.93, stats., or any similar No. 16-05 3 statute from another jurisdiction; claims arising from ch. 553, stats., or any similar statute from another jurisdiction.
  • 35007 - UCC Claims Greater Than $100,000
    Cases involving claims or disputes under chs. 402, 403, 404, 405, or 409, or any similar statute or law from another jurisdiction, when the amount in controversy exceeds $100,000, exclusive of interest, costs, and attorney fees.
  • 35008 - Receiverships Greater Than $250,000
    Cases involving receiverships in excess of $250,000.
  • 35009 - Arbitration award – confirm/compel/enforce
    Cases involving confirmation of arbitration awards and compelling/enforcing arbitration awards.
  • 35010 - Commercial Real Estate Construction Greater Than $250,000
    Cases involving commercial real estate construction disputes over $250,000.

Commercial Docket Court decisions

The following documents are in Adobe PDF format unless otherwise indicated.

Commercial docket court judges

District 2

  • Hon. Jon E. Fredrickson
  • Hon. Eugene A. Gasiorkiewicz
  • Hon. David Reddy
  • Hon. David P. Wilk

District 8

  • Hon. Tammy Jo Hock
  • Hon. Michael T. Judge
  • Hon. Mark J. McGinnis
  • Hon. James Morrison

District 10

  • Hon. Scott Nordstrand
  • Hon. Michael Schumacher
  • Hon. Michael Waterman

Dane County

  • Hon. Val L. Bailey-Rihn
  • Hon. Julie Genovese
  • Hon. Frank Remington

Waukesha County

  • Hon. Michael Aprahamian
  • Hon. Michael Bohren
  • Hon. William Domina

For more information, contact Tom Schappa at Thomas.Schappa@wicourts.gov or (920) 448-4280.