Civil Rules, Local Court Rules for the Western District of Texas
Rule CV-1. Scope of Rules
- The rules of procedure in any proceeding in this court shall be prescribed by the laws of the United States, the rules of the Supreme Court of the United States, any applicable
rules of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and these rules.
- Where in any proceeding or in any instance there is no applicable rule of procedure, a judge may prescribe one.
- These rules may be cited as Local Court Rules.
- Unless otherwise provided, any revision to these rules applies to all cases pending on or filed after the date of the revision.
- Any judge of this court may waive any requirement of these rules regarding the administration of that judge’s docket.
- All parties are encouraged to review the materials from the clerk’s office for any rules or requirements adopted by any judge pursuant to this provision. The clerk must post any such
rules or requirements on the court website.
Rule CV-3. Commencement of Action
- Civil Cover Sheet. The clerk is authorized and instructed to require a complete and executed AO Form JS 44, Civil Cover Sheet, which shall accompany each civil case to be filed. If the filing of a civil case is not accompanied by a complete and executed Civil Cover Sheet, the clerk must accept the case for filing, but must promptly inform the filing party that the filing party must complete and execute the Civil Cover Sheet. If the filing party fails to do so not later than 7 days after being informed, the clerk must so advise the court. An unrepresented person who files a civil case or a person who, when filing a civil case, is in the custody of a civil, state, or federal institution, need not complete and execute the Civil Cover Sheet. All parties are required to advise the court of any related cases, through means of the Civil Cover Sheet or otherwise.
Habeas Corpus Petitions Under 28 U.S.C. §§ 2241 and 2254 and Post-Conviction Motions Under 28 U.S.C. § 2255..
- Petitions for writs of habeas corpus filed under 28 U.S.C. §§ 2241 and 2254 and post-conviction motions filed under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 shall be in writing, signed, and verified under penalty of perjury. See 28 U.S.C. § 2242.
- Such petitions and motions shall be made on forms supplied by the court or set forth in detail all the information requested in the court’s forms.
- A § 2241 petition must be filed in the division that includes the county in which the petitioner is in custody. A § 2254 petition must be filed in the division that includes the county in which the petitioner was convicted and sentenced or is in custody. A § 2255 motion must be filed in the division in which the movant was tried and sentenced. A list of divisions and the counties they cover appears in the Introduction to these Local Court Rules.
Rule CV-5. Filing Requirements
- Filing Requirements. Documents filed by electronic means must comply with the Administrative Policies and Procedures for Electronic Filing in Civil and Criminal Cases, available on the court website.
- Proposed Orders. Proposed orders must be filed through the clerk’s office and not sent directly to the judge.
- Nonconforming Documents. If a document that fails to conform with these rules is submitted, the clerk shall file the document and promptly inform the filing party that the document is not in compliance with these rules.
Rule CV-5.2. Documents Filed Under Seal
- In limited circumstances, a party may need to submit a sealed document for consideration by the court. For purposes of this rule, the term “sealed document” may include any pleading, motion, paper, physical item, or other submission that the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or these rules permit or require to be filed. If the sealed document is associated with a pleading, motion, or other submission requesting or opposing relief from the court, as in the case of an exhibit to such submission, the sealed document must not be filed with the submission. Instead, the sealed document must be separately filed as an exhibit to a motion requesting permission to keep the document under seal (a “sealing motion”). All documents intended to be kept under seal must be filed as an exhibit to a sealing motion.
- Motions to keep pleadings, motions, or other submissions requesting or opposing relief from the court under seal are disfavored. The court expects parties to draft such submissions in a manner that does not disclose confidential information. Parties should consider redacting confidential information not critical to the filing. When it is necessary to support the filing, confidential information should be included in an appendix filed under seal and generally referenced, without being revealed, in the filing.
- The sealing motion must identify the submission the sealed document is associated with, if applicable. The sealing motion and the accompanying sealed document must be filed under seal, state the factual basis for the requested sealing order, and otherwise comply with the requirements of Rules CV-7 and CV-10 and the procedures governing electronic or paper filings, as applicable to the submission. The court expects parties to draft sealing motions in a manner that does not disclose confidential information because the sealing motion, without the sealed document, may subsequently be unsealed by court order.
- If the court grants a sealing motion, the clerk will keep the sealed document under seal unless otherwise ordered by the court, and, if appropriate, the clerk shall link the sealed document to its associated pleading, motion, or other submission. The court may order that the sealing motion, without the sealed document, be unsealed. If the court denies a sealing motion, the clerk, on order of the court, shall delete the sealed document.
- Counsel for a party moving to keep any document under seal is responsible for serving a copy of the sealed document on all counsel of record. Counsel for a party submitting documents containing redactions is responsible for serving an unredacted copy of the document on all counsel of record, except that material may be left redacted if it is protected from disclosure by an applicable statute or order. Counsel may not use the court’s electronic notice facilities to serve the sealed or unredacted document.
Rule CV-7. Pleadings Allowed; Form of Motions
- Generally.Unless made during a hearing or trial, a pleading, motion, or other submission must meet the requirements of Rule CV-10.
- Leave to File. When a motion for leave to file a pleading, motion, or other submission is required, an executed copy of the proposed pleading, motion, or other submission shall be filed as an exhibit to the motion for leave. Unless otherwise ordered, if the motion for leave is granted, the clerk shall promptly file the pleading, motion, or other submission. After leave is granted, any applicable time limits triggered by the pleading, motion, or other submission shall run from the filing of the pleading, motion, or other submission by the clerk or otherwise.
- Generally. Any legal authority in support of a motion must be cited in the motion, and not in a separate brief. An appendix may be filed with the motion specifying any factual basis relied upon. If filed, the appendix must include all affidavits, deposition transcripts, ,or other documents supporting the relied upon facts. All motions must state the grounds therefor and cite any applicable rule, statute, or other authority, justifying the relief sought.
- Page limits Unless otherwise authorized by the court, discovery and case management motions are limited to 10 pages and other motions are limited to 20 pages. The page limits are exclusive of the caption, the signature block, any certificate, and any accompanying documents.
- Generally. Any party opposing a motion shall file a response and supporting documents as are then available. The response must contain a concise statement of the reasons for opposition to the motion and citations of the legal authorities on which the party relies.
- Time limits. A response to a discovery or case management motion shall be filed not later than 7 days after the filing of the motion. A response to other motions shall be filed not later than 14 days after the filing of the motion, except as provided by Rule CV-15. If there is no response filed within the time period prescribed by this rule, the court may grant the motion as unopposed.
- Page limits. Unless otherwise authorized by the court, a response to a discovery or case management motion is limited to 10 pages and a response to other motions is limited to 20 pages. These page limits are exclusive of the caption, the signature block, any certificate, and any accompanying documents.
- Generally. A party may file a reply in support of a motion. Absent leave of court, no further submissions on the motion are allowed.
- Time limits. A reply in support of a motion shall be filed not later than 7 days after the filing of the response to the motion. The court need not wait for a reply before ruling on a motion.
- Page limits. Unless otherwise authorized by the court, a reply in support of a discovery or case management motion is limited to 5 pages and a reply in support of other motions is limited to 10 pages. These page limits are exclusive of the caption, the signature block, any certificate, and any accompanying documents.
- Proposed Orders. A proposed order is required for all discovery and case management motions.
- Conference Required. The court may refuse to hear or may deny a nondispositive motion unless the movant advises the court within the body of the motion that counsel for the parties have conferred in a good-faith attempt to resolve the matter by agreement and certifies the specific reason that no agreement could be made. If there is any ambiguity about whether a motion is dispositive or nondispositive, the parties should confer. Movants are encouraged to indicate in the title of the motion whether the motion is opposed. A motion is unopposed only if there has been an actual conference with opposing counsel and there is no opposition to any of the relief requested in the motion.
Rule CV-10. Form of Pleadings
- A pleading, motion, or other submission shall be typed or printed in 12-point or larger font (including footnotes), double-spaced, on paper sized 8½” x 11″ with one-inch margins on all sides and shall be endorsed with the style of the case and the descriptive name of the document. Headings, footnotes, and quotations more than two lines long may be singlespaced.
- A pleading, motion, or other submission filed by a represented party shall contain the mailing address, e-mail address, signature, state bar card number, and telephone and fax numbers, including area code, of the attorney.
- A pleading, motion, or other submission filed by an unrepresented party shall contain the party’s mailing address, e-mail address, signature, and telephone and fax numbers, including area code.
- An unrepresented party and any attorney representing a party must promptly file a notice of any change in the party’s or attorney’s name, mailing address, e-mail address, or telephone or fax number. The court may sanction a party for the party’s or the attorney’s failure to do so, including dismissal of the party’s claims or defenses.
Rule CV-15. Amendment of Pleadings
- Notwithstanding the time limits provided in Rule CV-7, a party may respond to a first
motion under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b) by filing an amended pleading as a matter of course not later than 21 days after the filing of the motion. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 15.
- A party that is entitled to amend its pleadings as a matter of course pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 15 may do so without the necessity of filing a motion for leave to amend.
Rule CV-16. Pretrial Conferences; Scheduling; Management
- A scheduling order must be entered in every case except those exempted in subdivision (b) of this rule. The form of the scheduling order should conform to the form prescribed by the judge and posted on the court website. If the judge has not posted a form scheduling order on the website, the scheduling order may conform to the form set out in Appendix B of
- The same types of cases that are exempt from mandatory disclosure requirements under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26 are exempt from the scheduling order requirement of Rule 16. In addition, the following categories of cases are also exempt from the scheduling order requirement: (1) bankruptcy appeals; (2) civil forfeiture cases; (3) land condemnation cases; (4) naturalization proceedings filed as civil cases; (5) interpleader cases; and (6) any other case where the judge finds that the ends of justice would not be served by using the scheduling order procedure of Rule 16.
- Not later than 60 days after any appearance of any defendant, the parties shall submit a proposed scheduling order to the court in the form described in subdivision (a). The parties first shall confer as required by Rule 26(f). The content of the proposed scheduling order shall include proposals for all deadlines set out in the described form. The parties shall endeavor to agree concerning the contents of the proposed order, but in the event they are unable to do so, each party’s position and the reasons for the disagreement shall be included in the proposed schedule submitted to the court. In the event the plaintiff has not yet obtained service on all defendants, the plaintiff shall include an explanation of why all parties have not been served. The scheduling proposals of the parties shall be considered by the court, but the setting of all dates is within the discretion of the court.
- Filing a report that substantially conforms to Appendix N satisfies the provisions of Rule 26(f).
- Unopposed discovery may continue after the deadline for discovery contained in the scheduling order, provided that discovery does not delay other pretrial preparations or the trial setting. Absent exceptional circumstances, no motions relating to discovery, including motions under Rules 26(c), 29, and 37, shall be filed after the expiration of the discovery deadline, unless they are filed within 14 days after the discovery deadline and pertain to conduct occurring during the final 7 days of discovery. Written discovery is not timely unless the response to that discovery would be due before the discovery deadline. The responding party has no obligation to respond and object to written discovery if the response and objection would not be due until after the discovery deadline. Notices served before the discovery deadline that purport to schedule depositions after the discovery deadline will not be enforced.
- Unless otherwise ordered by the court, each party shall serve and file the following information at least 14 days before the scheduled date for trial, jury selection, docket call, or the final pretrial conference, whichever is first:
- A list of questions the party desires the court to ask prospective jurors.
- In cases to be tried to a jury, a statement of the party’s claims or defenses to be used by the court in conducting voir dire. The statement shall be no longer than ½ page with type double-spaced.
- A list of stipulated facts.
- An appropriate identification of each exhibit as specified in this rule (except those to be used for impeachment only), separately identifying those that the party expects to offer and those that the party may offer if the need arises.
- The name and, if not previously provided, the address and telephone number of each witness (except those to be used for impeachment only), separately identifying those whom the party expects to present and those whom the party may call if the need arises.
- The name of those witnesses whose testimony is expected to be presented by means of a deposition and designation by reference to page and line of the testimony to be offered (except those to be used for impeachment only) and, if not taken stenographically, a transcript of the pertinent portions of the deposition testimony.
- Proposed jury instructions and verdict forms.
- In nonjury trials, Proposed Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law.
- Any motions in limine.
- An estimate of the probable length of trial.
- At least 7 days prior to the scheduled date for trial, jury selection, docket call, or the final pretrial conference, whichever is first, each party shall serve and file the following:
- A list disclosing any objections to the use under Rule 32 of deposition testimony designated by the other party.
- A list disclosing any objection, together with the grounds therefore, that may be made to the admissibility of any exhibits. Objections not so disclosed, other than objections under Federal Rules of Evidence 402 and 403 shall be deemed waived unless excused by the court for good cause shown.
- Responses to any motion in limine.
- All trial exhibits must be marked with an identifying sequence, followed by a dash, followed by a number; for example, Exhibit P-1 and Exhibit D-1. The identifying sequence (e.g., “P” and “D”) will identify the party who will offer the exhibit. Parties will assign numbers to their exhibits consecutively, beginning with the number 1. The letter “G” will be assigned to the government for identification purposes. In cases involving more complex pleading relationships (e.g., consolidated cases, intervenors, and third party actions), it is the responsibility of counsel for the plaintiff, in consultation with the judge’s courtroom deputy clerk, to coordinate the assignment of the unique identification sequences.
Rule CV-23. Class Actions
A motion to certify a Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 class must include the information enumerated in Appendix A to these rules.
Rule CV-26. General Provisions Governing Discovery
- Relief. If relief is sought under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26(c) or 37, concerning any interrogatories, requests for production or inspection, requests for admissions, answers to interrogatories or responses to requests for admissions, copies of the portions of the interrogatories, requests, answers or responses in dispute shall be attached to the motion.
Definitions and Rules of Construction. The full text of the definitions and rules of construction set forth in this paragraph is deemed incorporated by reference into all discovery requests, but shall not preclude (i) the definition of other terms specific to the particular litigation, (ii) the use of abbreviations or (iii) a more narrow definition of a term defined in this paragraph. This rule is not intended to broaden or narrow the scope of discovery permitted by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The following definitions apply to all discovery requests:
- Communication. The term “communication” means the transmittal of information (in the form of facts, ideas, inquiries or otherwise).
- Document. The term “document” means any document or electronically stored information as described in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 34(a). A draft of a nonidentical copy is a separate document within the meaning of this term.
- Identify (With Respect to Persons). When referring to a person, to “identify” means to give, to the extent known, the person’s full name, present or last known address, e-mail address, and telephone number, and when referring to a natural person, additionally, the present or last known place of employment. Once a person has been identified in accordance with this paragraph, only the name of that person need be listed in response to subsequent discovery requesting the identification of that person.
- Identify (With Respect to Documents). When referring to documents, “to identify” means to give, to the extent known, the (i) type of document; (ii) general subject matter; (iii) date of the document; and (iv) author(s), addressee(s), and recipient(s).
- Parties. The terms “plaintiff” and “defendant” as well as a party’s full or abbreviated name or pronoun referring to a party mean the party and, where applicable, its officers, directors, employees, partners, corporate parent, subsidiaries or affiliates. This definition is not intended to impose a discovery obligation on any person who is not a party to the litigation.
- Person. The term “person” means any natural person or business, legal or governmental entity or association.
- Concerning. The term “concerning” means relating to, referring to, describing, evidencing or constituting.
- Generally. Unless the party timely objects, a party’s production of a document in response to written discovery authenticates the document for use against the party in any pretrial proceeding or at trial.
- Time for Objection. Once the producing party has actual notice that the document will be used, the party must object to the document’s authenticity within the time period ordered by the court or specified by Rule CV-16. If neither the court nor Rule CV-16 specifies a time period, the party must object within 14 days.
- Manner of Objection. A party may object to the authenticity of the document, or any part of it, and must state the specific basis for the objection. An objection must be made either on the record or in writing and must have a good faith factual and legal basis. An objection made to the authenticity of only part of a document does not affect the authenticity of the remainder.
- Response. If the producing party objects to the document’s authenticity, the party attempting to use the document should be given a reasonable opportunity to establish its authenticity.
Rule CV-30. Depositions Upon Oral Examination
- Notice. The notice for a deposition shall be in the form prescribed in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 30, and in addition shall state the identity of persons who will attend other than the witness, parties, spouses of parties, counsel, employees of counsel, and the officer taking the deposition. If any party intends to have any other persons attend, that party must give reasonable notice to all parties of the identity of such other persons.
- Procedures, Examinations and Objections. The parties are permitted to stipulate on the record of a deposition any agreement regarding the rules for the deposition. Absent an agreement by the parties, objections to questions during a deposition are limited to “Objection, leading” and “Objection, form.” Objections to testimony during a deposition are limited to “Objection, nonresponsive.” Any objections to the form of the question or responsiveness of the answer are waived if not properly state during a deposition. All other objections need not be made or recorded during a deposition to be later raised with the court. An attorney shall not, in the presence of a deponent, make objections or statements that might suggest an answer to the deponent. An attorney for a deponent shall not initiate a private conference with the deponent regarding a pending question, except for the purpose of determining whether a claim of privilege should be asserted. An attorney who instructs a deponent not to answer a question shall state, on the record, the legal basis for the instruction consistent with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 30. If a claim of privilege has been asserted as a basis for an instruction not to answer, the attorney seeking discovery shall have reasonable latitude during the deposition to question the deponent and establish relevant information concerning the appropriateness of the assertion of the privilege, including (i) the applicability of the privilege being asserted, (ii) the circumstances that may result in the privilege having been waived, and (iii) circumstances that may overcome a claim of qualified privilege. A violation of the provisions of this Rule may be deemed to be a violation of a court order and may subject the violator to sanctions under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37.
- Recorded Depositions. If a deposition is to be recorded, the party requesting the recording shall be responsible for ensuring that the equipment used is adequate to produce a clear record. If the deposition is to be video recorded, the procedures set out in Appendix I shall govern the deposition proceedings, except upon stipulation of the parties or order of the court upon motion and showing of good cause.
Rule CV-33. Interrogatories to Parties
- All answers to interrogatories must be signed under oath by the party to whom they are directed. If circumstances prevent a party from signing the answers, the party’s attorney may serve the answers without the party’s signature with a statement that properly executed answers will be served on the requesting party not later than 21 days after serving the unexecuted answers. This time may be extended by order of the court.
- A party that serves written interrogatories under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 33 may use any of the following approved interrogatories. The court will not consider objections to these interrogatories, except upon a showing of exceptional circumstances. Each approved interrogatory counts as one question. Other interrogatories are counted in accordance with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 33.
- Identify all persons who you believe have knowledge of relevant facts and identify the issues upon which you believe they have knowledge.
- Identify all persons or legal entities who have a subrogation interest in the cause of action set forth in your complaint [or counterclaim], and state the basis and extent of said interest.
- If [name of party to whom the interrogatory is directed] is a partner, a partnership, or a subsidiary or affiliate of a publicly owned corporation that has a financial interest in the outcome of this lawsuit, list the identity of the parent corporation, affiliate, partner, or partnership and the relationship between it and [the named party]. If there is a publicly owned corporation or a holding company not a party to the case that has a financial interest in the outcome, list the identity of such corporation and the nature of the financial interest.
- If the defendant is improperly identified, give its proper identification and state whether you will accept service of an amended summons and complaint reflecting the information furnished by you in answer hereto.
- If you contend that some other person or legal entity is, in whole or in part, liable to [the plaintiff or defendant] in this matter, identify that person or legal entity and describe in detail the basis of said liability.
Rule CV-36. Requests for Admissions
Requests for admissions made pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 36 are limited to 30 requests. The court may permit further requests upon a showing of good cause.
Rule CV-54. Costs and Attorney Fees
Bill of Costs.
- Unless otherwise determined by the court, costs will be assessed in the final judgment in a case. A party awarded costs shall prepare and file a proposed bill of costs on Form AO 133 not later than 14 days after the entry of judgment. The proposed bill of costs shall be served on all parties.
- Any party opposing a proposed bill of costs must notify the party requesting cost not later than 7 days after the filing of the proposed bill of costs. The parties must then confer in an effort to resolve the dispute.
- If a dispute remains:
- the parties may file a joint motion indicating the areas of agreement and the areas of disagreement; or
- the party requesting costs may file a motion indicating the areas of agreement and the areas of disagreement, to which the opposing party may file a response.
- The clerk shall not tax costs until the expiration of 21 days after the filing of the proposed bill of costs. If no motion is filed in that time period, the clerk shall proceed to tax costs. In a case involving an uncontested bill of costs, if the clerk fails to tax costs within 28 days after the proposed bill of costs is filed, costs will be deemed taxed as proposed.
- A party dissatisfied with the clerk’s action may file a motion to review the clerk’s action no later than 7 days after the clerk has taxed costs.
Either type of motion must be filed not later than 21 days after the filing of the proposed bill of costs. The motion must contain a certificate of service confirming compliance with the conference requirements of this rule.
- Unless the substantive law requires a claim for attorney’s fees and related nontaxable expenses to be proved at trial as an element of damages to be determined by a jury, a claim for fees shall be made by motion in accordance with paragraph (b)(2) not later than 14 days after entry of judgment pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54. A motion for award of attorney’s fees filed beyond the 14-day period may be deemed untimely and a waiver of entitlement to fees.
- A claim for fees shall be made as follows. Counsel for the parties shall meet and confer for the purpose of resolving all disputed issues relating to attorney’s fees prior to making application. The application shall certify that such a conference has occurred. If no agreement is reached, the applicant shall certify the specific reason why the matter could not be resolved by agreement. The motion shall include a supporting document organized chronologically by activity or project, listing attorney name, date, and hours expended on the particular activity or project, as well as an affidavit certifying (1) that the hours expended were actually expended on the topics stated, and (2) that the hours expended ad rate claimed were reasonable. Such application shall also be accompanied by a brief memo setting for the the method by which the amount of fees was computed, with sufficient citation of authority to permit the reviewing court the opportunity to determine whether such computation is correct. The request shall include reference to the statutory authorization or other authority for the request.
- A response or reply to a motion for attorney’s fees must be filed in accordance with the provisions of Rule CV-7.
Rule CV-65. Injunctions
An application for a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction shall be made in an instrument separate from the complaint.
Rule CV-65.1. Security; Proceedings Against Sureties
- No clerk, marshal, attorney, or officer of this court will be accepted as surety, either directly or indirectly, on any bond or undertaking in any action or proceeding in this court, nor shall any such person advance or provide money or other thing of value for any cost, bail, attachment or replevy bond taken in this court.
- The clerk shall make available a list of corporations or other entities authorized by the Secretary of the Treasury to act as surety on official bonds on the district’s website, or in such other manner as the clerk deems sufficient public notice.
- Unless the court otherwise directs, every bond furnished in connection with any matter must be done in one of the following manners, either:
- Cash or United States Government Bonds deposited in the registry of the court in lieu of sureties; or
- Surety bonds that have:
- A corporation authorized by the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States to act as surety on official bonds that either satisfies 31 C.F.R. § 224.3 or has appointed an agent for service of process in the Western District of Texas in accordance with 31 C.F.R. § 224.4; or
- An individual resident of the Western District of Texas who satisfied the court that he owns real or personal property not exempt by law within the district sufficient to justify the full amount of the suretyship.
- Each person who is to act as a principal or as a surety on an official bond shall undertake to:
- Prosecute the claim or action with effect;
- Abide by the decision of the court; and
- Pay the damages sustained, to the full extent of the face amount of the bond, if the court finds that the order secured by the bond was wrongfully applied for or wrongfully made.
Rule CV-67. Deposit and Disbursement of Registry Funds
Deposits into and disbursements from the registry of the court must be made in compliance with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 67 and 28 USC § § 2041 and 2042. A motion requesting leave of court to deposit or disburse funds into or out of the registry must be filed and served on all interested parties to the proceedings. Attorneys should contact the financial deputy clerk in the division where the case is pending regarding financial language to be include in the motion and proposed order.
Rule CV-72. Magistrate Judges, Pretrial Matters
The magistrate judges of this court are authorized to perform all the duties allowed to magistrate judges under the Federal Magistrates Act as amended in 28 U.S.C. § 636. The magistrate judges of this court are designated to exercise civil jurisdiction under section 636(c)(1) upon consent of the parties. Whenever applicable, the “Local Rules of the Assignment of Duties to United States Magistrate Judges” found at Appendix C shall apply to proceedings before the magistrate judges.
Rule CV-79. Removal and Destruction of Records and Exhibits
- Nothing in the files of the court shall be taken from the office or custody of the clerk, except on written order of the court. The party offering any exhibit or deposition shall be responsible for its removal from the clerk’s office within 60 days after the final disposition of the case, including appeal thereof. A detailed receipt shall be given by the party to the clerk. Any exhibit or deposition remaining more than 60 days after final disposition of the case, including appeal, may be destroyed or otherwise disposed of by the clerk.
- Prior to their destruction, documents filed under seal in civil actions must remain sealed with the clerk, unless otherwise ordered by the court.
Rule CV-88. Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Use of ADR.. In all civil cases, unless specifically ordered otherwise, the parties shall agree upon a method of ADR, an ADR provider, the method of compensating the provider, and a date for completing the ADR proceeding. ADR proceedings must be completed not later than 60 days before the date of the trial setting.
- Attendance; Authority to Settle. Counsel, party representatives with authority to negotiate a settlement, and all other persons necessary to negotiate a settlement, including insurance carrier representatives, must attend the ADR session in person, unless the parties agree or the court orders otherwise.
- Fees. The provider and the litigants will determine the fees for the ADR. The court reserves the right to review the reasonableness of the fees. If the provider and litigants are unable to agree, the court will determine an appropriate fee.
- Disqualification. No person shall serve as a provider if any of the circumstances specified in 28 U.S.C. § 455 of the Judicial Code of Conduct exist, or if the provider believes in good faith that such circumstances exist.
- Relief from ADR. A party opposing ADR must file a motion requesting to be exempt from ADR.
Confidentiality. Except as otherwise provided in this rule,, or as agreed by the participants, a communication relating to the subject matter of any civil or criminal dispute made by any participant during an ADR procedure, whether before or after the institution of formal judicial proceedings, is confidential, may not be disclosed, may not be used as evidence against the participant in any judicial or administrative proceeding, and does not constitute a waiver of any existing privileges or immunities.
- Any record made at an ADR procedure is confidential, and the participants or the third party facilitating the procedure may not be required to testify in any proceedings relating to or arising out of the matter in dispute or be subject to process requiring the disclosure of confidential information or data relating to or arising out of the matter in dispute.
- An oral communication or other information used in or made a part of an ADR procedure is admissible or discoverable if it is admissible or discoverable independent of the procedure.
- If this section conflicts with other legal requirements for disclosure of communications or materials, the issue of confidentiality may be presented to the court having jurisdiction of the proceedings to determine, in camera, whether the facts, circumstances, and context of the communications or other information sought to be disclosed warrant a protective order of the court or whether the communications or other information are subject to disclosure.
- Final ADR Report. At the conclusion of each ADR proceeding, the provider shall submit to the court a notice of outcome, including the style and number of the case, the type of case, the method of ADR, and whether the case has settled.