Cottrell v. Ogbuehi et al

Filing 103

ORDER regarding Consent to United States Magistrate Judge and directing Clerk of Court to send parties Consent / Decline Forms signed by Magistrate Judge Stanley A. Boone on 3/21/2017. (20-Day Filing Deadline). (Attachments: # 1 Consent / Decline Form). (Lundstrom, T)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 DALE L. COTTRELL, 12 Plaintiff, 13 v. 14 FELIX IGBINOSA, et al., 15 Defendants. 16 17 ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Case No.: 1:13-cv-01530-LJO-SAB (PC) ORDER REGARDING CONSENT TO UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE ORDER DIRECTING CLERK OF COURT TO SEND PARTIES CONSENT/DECLINE FORMS Plaintiff Dale L. Cottrell is appearing pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action 18 pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff declined United States Magistrate Judge jurisdiction on July 8, 19 2015 (ECF No. 7), and Defendants have not consented or declined. 20 This action is proceeding against Defendants Lackey and Berard for deliberate indifference to 21 a serious medical need in violation of the Eighth Amendment. Now that the case is ready to be set for 22 trial, the parties are advised of the following important information about scheduling and trailing cases 23 before the undersigned: 24 District Court Judges of the Fresno Division of the Eastern District of California have one of 25 the heaviest caseload in the nation. As a result, each District Judge schedules multiple trials to begin 26 on each available trial date. Civil cases will trail and begin as soon as a courtroom is cleared. The law 27 requires that the Court give any criminal trial priority over civil trials or any other matter. A civil trial 28 set to begin while a criminal trial is proceeding will trail the completion of the criminal trial. 1 The Court cannot give advance notice of which cases will trail or for how long because the 1 2 Court does not know which cases actually will go to trial or precisely how long each will last. Once 3 your trial date arrives, counsel, parties and witnesses must remain on 24-hour-stand-by until a court 4 opens. Since continuance to a date certain will simply postpone, but not solve, the problem, 5 continuances of any civil trial under these circumstances will no longer be entertained, absent a 6 specific and stated finding of good cause. The Court will use its best efforts to mitigate the effect of 7 the foregoing and to resolve all cases in a timely manner. 8 One alternative is for the parties to consent to a United States Magistrate Judge conducting all 9 proceedings, including trial and entry of final judgment, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c), Federal Rule 10 of Civil Procedure 73, and Local Rule 305. The Eastern District Magistrate Judges, all experienced 11 former trial lawyers, use the same jury pool and same court facilities as United States District Court 12 Judges. Since Magistrate Judges do not conduct felony trials, they have greater flexibility and 13 schedule firm trial dates. Judgment entered by a United States Magistrate Judge is appealable directly 14 to the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit. (While there are scheduling benefits to 15 consenting to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction, substantive rulings and decisions will not be affected by 16 whether a party chooses to consent or not.) 17 As another response to its large caseload, the Fresno Division of the Eastern District of 18 California is assigning cases, whenever possible, to Article III District Court Judges from around the 19 nation as Visiting Judges. Pursuant to the Local Rules, Appendix A, such reassignments will be 20 random, and the parties will receive no advance notice before their case is reassigned to an Article III 21 District Court Judge from outside of the Eastern District of California. 22 Accordingly, it is HEREBY ORDERED that: 23 1. The Clerk’s Office shall send the parties consent/decline forms; 24 2. Within twenty (20) days from the date of service of this order, the parties may return the consent form to the Court; and 25 26 /// 27 /// 28 /// 2 1 3. After the twenty (20) day deadline has expired, if all parties have not consented to 2 United States Magistrate Judge jurisdiction the matter will be set for jury trial before 3 the undersigned. 4 5 6 7 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: /s/ Lawrence J. O’Neill _____ March 21, 2017 UNITED STATES CHIEF DISTRICT JUDGE 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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