United States District Court
United States Magistrate Judge for the Middle District of Pennsylvania Biographical Information Chambers e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org For additional information, please call: (717) 221-3980.
Judicial Assistant: (717) 221-3980
Chambers: (717) 221-3980
Written correspondence from counsel to the court.
I am pleased to accept letters to communicate procedural information and information about settlement efforts, however, any application for an order, including an application for an extension of time, must be made by motion.
Preference for the use of telephone conferences rather than in-person conferences for any category of conferences scheduled in connection with a case.
My practice is designed to foster full communications in cases, while remaining mindful of the need to avoid undue burdens on counsel. For cases involving only local counsel, I prefer that conferences be conducted in person with counsel, although we will conduct telephonic conferences for local counsel upon request. To avoid undue travel expense, conferences involving counsel outside the Harrisburg metropolitan area will be conducted telephonically unless counsel request, or the Court directs, an in-person conference.
Courtesy copies of motions, briefs, and other writings for chambers.
With the advent of CM/ECF pleadings, the submission of courtesy copies to my chambers is no longer necessary.
Federal Rule 26 and M.D. Pa. Local Rule 26.1 et seq. (including your approach to initial disclosures, discovery prior to Rule 16 conference) and preferences as to the matters encompassed within those Rules.
I anticipate that the parties will actively comply with discovery obligations as prescribed by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the local rules in accordance with any discovery schedules previously established in a case. If no discovery schedule has been established in a case, then parties should continue to actively comply with all discovery obligations pending scheduling of the Case Management Conference, and may be required to detail discovery efforts to date at the Case Management Conference. I stand ready at any time to assist the parties in addressing and constructively resolving discovery disputes. The parties should contact my office prior to filing motions to compel or sanctions motions relating to discovery matters, so that these matters can be efficiently resolved without the need for protracted litigation.
The extent to which counsel may influence the length of the discovery period, extensions, trial dates, etc.
As a general rule I anticipate giving counsel’s joint case management plan great weight in setting discovery and pre-trial litigation schedules. Since I am relying on counsel in this regard, I expect that the case management order’s dates and deadlines normally will not be subject to extensions, once in place, unless unusual circumstances are presented and a timely motion is made.
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