Monday, April 18, 2011

I Sent You a Draft Motion -- See, We Met and Conferred!

I've noticed that Magistrate Judge Goodman has a bug up very particular about the Local Rule requirement that the parties meet and confer before filing a motion.

Here he is succinctly explaining the reasoning behind the rule, with which I totally agree:
Strict compliance with Local Rule 7.1(a)(3) is very important. The non-moving party does not always oppose relief sought by the moving party. E.g., id. at 1301 (noting that the non-moving party in that case “did not, for all practical purposes, object to the relief being sought in three of the motions”). Compliance with this rule may save the parties the time and costs associated with filing and responding to a motion. Wrangen, 2008 WL 5427785, at *1. This rule is also a mechanism for alerting the Court to whether a motion is opposed, allowing (in the case of unopposed motions) the Court to expedite its ruling and to avoid spending its own time unnecessarily considering issues that are mooted by the agreement.
So do you think sending a draft motion to the other side before filing complies with the Local Rule?

Let's see:
In their original Motion for Costs, Defendants provided the following:
Defendants certify that a good faith effort to resolve this motion by agreement has taken place. A draft motion and schedule of costs have previously been sent to opposing counsel.
This certification and the purported effort to confer it describes does not comply with Local Rule 7.1(a)(3). Local Rule 7.1(a)(3) is not satisfied merely by sending a copy of a draft motion to an opposing counsel. See Royal Bahamian, 744 F. Supp. 2d at 1299 n.2 (“‘Simply sending a letter without further follow-up does not constitute the type of effort to engage in a pre-filing conference anticipated by Local Rule 7.1’”) (quoting Wrangen, 2008 WL 5427785, at *1). Providing a draft motion to opposing counsel could be part of a good faith effort to confer, but in order to satisfy the rule this way, for instance, counsel must attempt to discuss the motion, and then wait a reasonable amount of time (as dictated by the situation) for a response before filing. In addition, my standard discovery procedures (which are technically inapplicable here) require an actual conversation.

Defendants’ certification does not even allow me to conclude with any certainty that Plaintiff’s counsel received the draft motion. Sending a copy of a motion does not guarantee that Plaintiff’s counsel actually received, let alone reviewed, considered, and declined to agree to any of the requested relief before Defendant filed it.
It goes on from there, but I'm guessing that's a no.


Anonymous said...

Silly. Talk about missing the point of the Rule. The Mag just spent countless time complaining (to no end) about compliance with a silly rule.

The rule is well meaning, but ends up creating MORE fees.

Anonymous said...

Typical federal court formalism. If the motion is uncontested it will say so, otherwise IT IS OPPOSED.

Anonymous said...

look! a state hack sober and its 146 pm!

Rumpole said...

He's got a stick up his ass. But then, he always did.

Anonymous said...

federal court. form over substance.

Kissimmee Kid said...

This is typical federal court bullshit. Do not expect justice in the courts of the United States. If you are rich, you may not get screwed, but form will be elevated over substance. Pompous a-holes, bench and bar alike.

“Pre-file conference,” what a freaking waste of time. The losing Plaintiff don’t want to pay nutten; make his lawyer burn hours in a case he won’t get paid on? How classy. Rub his nose in it. Make him meet, you can't rule on a simple motion, but you can make him meet. “Help wanted: federal magistrate, must be petty and vindictive, heath insurance provided.”

How hard is it to tax costs? What a lazy pos this magistrate is. He’d rather bloviate on for pages then sit down and do his freaking job. Tax the taxable costs you moron!