Filing Exceptions to the Magistrate’s Report

Guidelines & Recommendations


You may file exceptions to the decision of a magistrate as provided by Maryland Rule 9-208. The Maryland Rules may be found in the law library at the courthouse. 

Filing Deadline

Exceptions must be filed no later than the exceptions date stated in the magistrate’s recommendations or the proposed order, which is either ten days from the date the recommendations are placed on the record or are served pursuant to Maryland Rule 9-208(e). If exceptions are not timely filed, an order will be signed based upon the recommendations. 

In Writing

 Exceptions must be in writing and the asserted error stated with particularity. Any error not stated in the exceptions will be considered waived unless the court finds that justice requires otherwise. The exceptions are filed with the clerk’s office, and you must mail or personally deliver a copy of the exceptions to the opposing party or their attorney, if they are represented.   

Transcript Required

An exceptions review by a judge of the circuit court is based upon the testimony which was taken before the magistrate unless the court determines otherwise. The rule requires that the excepting party, (1) Order a transcript of so much of the testimony as is necessary to rule on the exceptions, make an agreement for payment to ensure preparation of the transcript, and file a certificate of compliance stating the transcript has been ordered and the agreement has made; OR (2) File a certification that no transcript is necessary to rule on the exceptions; OR (3) File an agreed statement of facts in lieu of the transcript; OR (4) File an affidavit of indigency and motion requesting that the court accept an electronic recording of the proceedings.  Failure to follow this rule may result in your exceptions being denied or dismissed. 

Obtaining a Transcript

Transcripts of proceedings before the magistrate are available through the Office of the Court Reporter.  The cost of a transcript depends on the type of record and the number of pages in the final typed transcript.  Recordings of court proceedings in any format are not available.

To order a transcript, you will need the case number, date(s) of the proceeding you want transcribed and courtroom number.  Complete and submit the appropriate order form as directed below.  The form is attached and is available online or from a court reporter.  If you need to speak to a court reporter, please see the contact information below. 

Paying for Your Transcript


A court reporter will provide an estimate in advance, but will not know the final cost until the transcript is completed.  Payment in full based on the estimate is due upon placing an order.  Any additional costs beyond the initial payment shall be paid prior to delivery of the transcript.  Any overages will be refunded upon delivery of the transcript. 

Office of the Court Reporter

Mailing Address:   Court Reporter
                              175 Main Street
                              Prince Frederick, MD  20678

Telephone:           410-535-1600 ext. 2419
Fax:                      410-535-9336 

Family Law Assistance Program

The Family Services Office at the courthouse offers the Family Law Assistance Program every Wednesday from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.; intake begins at 8:30 a.m. The Family Law Assistance Program provides the opportunity to speak with an attorney free of charge. They cannot represent you but can give you some procedural guidance in your case. 

In addition there are online resources at
Note: This information is a guide only and is not a substitute for review of the Maryland Rules.  the Maryland Rules may be found in the Law Library in the Courthouse or on line.