Sun Valley Farms, LLC v. Western Veg Produce, Inc.

Filing 19

SCHEDULING ORDER, signed by Magistrate Judge Jennifer L. Thurston on 7/14/2021. Pleading Amendment Deadline 10/15/2021. Discovery Deadlines: Initial Disclosures 8/16/2021; Non-Expert 2/15/2022; Expert 6/1/2022. Mid-Discovery Status Conference set for 10/18/2021 at 08:30 AM in Bakersfield, 510 19th Street before Magistrate Judge Jennifer L. Thurston. Non-Dispositive Motion Deadlines: Filed by 6/15/2022; Hearing by 7/13/2022. Dispositive Motion Deadlines: Filed by 8/1/2022; Hearing by 9/12/2022. Pretrial Conference set for 11/3/2022 at 10:00 AM in Courtroom 2 (AWI) before District Judge Anthony W. Ishii. Jury Trial set for 1/10/2023 at 08:30 AM in Courtroom 2 (AWI) before District Judge Anthony W. Ishii. (Hall, S)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 SUN VALLEY FARMS, LLC, 12 13 14 Plaintiff, v. WESTERN VEG PRODUCE, INC., 15 Defendant. 16 Case No.: 1:20-CV-1665 AWI JLT ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) SCHEDULING ORDER1 (Fed. R. Civ. P. 16) Pleading Amendment Deadline: 10/15/2021 Discovery Deadlines: Initial Disclosures: 8/16/2021 Non-Expert: 2/15/2022 Expert: 6/1/2022 Mid-Discovery Status Conference: 10/18/2021 at 8:30 a.m. 17 Non-Dispositive Motion Deadlines: Filing: 6/15/2022 Hearing: 7/13/2022 18 19 20 Dispositive Motion Deadlines: Filing: 8/1/2022 Hearing: 9/12/2022 21 22 Pre-Trial Conference: 11/3/2022 at 10:00 a.m. Courtroom 2 23 24 Trial: 25 1/10/2023 at 8:30 a.m. Courtroom 2 Jury trial: 5 days 26 27 28 1 The Court finds the information provided by the parties in the Joint Scheduling Report and worksheet (Doc. 18) sufficient to schedule the matter without a hearing. Thus, the scheduling conference set for July 19, 2021 is VACATED. 1 1 2 I. Information Concerning the Court’s Schedule Out of fairness, the Court believes it is necessary to forewarn litigants that the Fresno Division 3 of the Eastern District of California now has the heaviest District Court Judge caseload in the entire 4 nation. While the Court will use its best efforts to resolve this case and all other civil cases in a timely 5 manner, the parties are advised that not all of the parties’ needs and expectations may be met as 6 expeditiously as desired. As multiple trials are set to begin upon the same date, parties may find their 7 case trailing with little notice before the trial begins. The law requires that the Court give any criminal 8 trial priority over civil trials or any other matter. The Court must proceed with a criminal trial even if a 9 civil trial was filed earlier and set for trial first. Continuances of any civil trial under these 10 circumstances will no longer be entertained, absent a specific and stated finding of good cause. All 11 parties should be informed that any civil trial set to begin during the time a criminal trial is proceeding 12 will trail the completion of the criminal trial. 13 The parties are reminded of the availability of a United States Magistrate Judge to conduct all 14 proceedings in this action. A United States Magistrate Judge is available to conduct trials, including 15 entry of final judgment, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c), Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 73, and Local 16 Rule 305. The same jury pool is used by both United States Magistrate Judges and United States 17 District Court Judges. Any appeal from a judgment entered by a United States Magistrate Judge is 18 taken directly to the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit. The parties are informed that 19 no substantive rulings or decisions will be affected by whether a party chooses to consent. 20 Finally, the Fresno Division of the Eastern District of California, whenever possible, is utilizing 21 United States Article III District Court Judges from throughout the nation as Visiting Judges. Pursuant 22 to the Local Rules, Appendix A, reassignments will be random, and the parties will receive no advance 23 notice before their case is reassigned to an Article III District Court Judge from outside of the Eastern 24 District of California. 25 Therefore, the parties are directed to consider consenting to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction to 26 conduct all further proceedings, including trial. Within 10 days of the date of this order, the parties 27 SHALL file a consent/decline form (provided by the Court at the inception of this case) indicating 28 whether they will consent to the jurisdiction of the Magistrate Judge. 2 1 II. Pleading Amendment Deadline Any requested pleading amendments are ordered to be filed, either through a stipulation or 2 3 motion to amend, no later than October 15, 2021. 4 III. 5 6 7 8 9 Discovery Plan and Cut-Off Date The parties are ordered to exchange the initial disclosures required by Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(a)(1) on or before August 16, 2021. The parties are ordered to complete all discovery pertaining to non-experts on or before February 15, 2022, and all discovery pertaining to experts on or before June 1, 2022. The parties are directed to disclose all expert witnesses, in writing, on or before March 1, 2022, 10 and to disclose all rebuttal experts on or before May 4, 2022. The written designation of retained and 11 non-retained experts shall be made pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. Rule 26(a)(2), (A), (B), and (C) and 12 shall include all information required thereunder. Failure to designate experts in compliance with 13 this order may result in the Court excluding the testimony or other evidence offered through such 14 experts that are not disclosed pursuant to this order. 15 The provisions of Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(4) and (5) shall apply to all discovery relating to experts 16 and their opinions. Experts must be fully prepared to be examined on all subjects and opinions 17 included in the designation. Failure to comply will result in the imposition of sanctions, which may 18 include striking the expert designation and preclusion of expert testimony. 19 20 21 The provisions of Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(e) regarding a party's duty to timely supplement disclosures and responses to discovery requests will be strictly enforced. A mid-discovery status conference is scheduled for October 18, 2021 at 8:30 a.m. before 22 Judge Thurston, located at 510 19th Street, Bakersfield, California. Counsel SHALL file a joint mid- 23 discovery status conference report one week before the conference. Counsel also SHALL lodge the 24 status report via e-mail to The joint statement SHALL outline the 25 discovery counsel have completed and that which needs to be completed as well as any impediments 26 to completing the discovery within the deadlines set forth in this order. Counsel SHALL discuss 27 settlement and certify that they have done so. Counsel may appear via teleconference by dialing (888) 28 557-8511 and entering Access Code 1652736, provided the Magistrate Judge's Courtroom Deputy 3 1 Clerk receives a written notice of the intent to appear telephonically no later than five court days 2 before the noticed hearing date. 3 IV. Pre-Trial Motion Schedule All non-dispositive pre-trial motions, including any discovery motions, shall be filed no later 4 5 than June 15, 20222, and heard on or before July 13, 2022. Non-dispositive motions are heard at 9:00 6 a.m., before Judge Thurston at the United States District Courthouse located at 510 19th Street, 7 Bakersfield, California. No motion to amend or stipulation to amend the case schedule will be entertained unless 8 9 it is filed at least one week before the first deadline the parties wish to extend. Likewise, no 10 written discovery motions shall be filed without the prior approval of the assigned Magistrate Judge. 11 A party with a discovery dispute must first confer with the opposing party in a good faith effort to 12 resolve by agreement the issues in dispute. If that good faith effort is unsuccessful, the moving party 13 promptly shall seek a telephonic hearing with all involved parties and the Magistrate Judge. It shall be 14 the obligation of the moving party to arrange and originate the conference call to the court. To 15 schedule this telephonic hearing, the parties are ordered to contact the Courtroom Deputy Clerk, Susan 16 Hall, at (661) 326-6620 or via email at At least three days before the 17 conference, counsel SHALL file informal letter briefs detailing their positions. The briefs may not 18 exceed 7 pages, excluding exhibits. Counsel must comply with Local Rule 251 with respect to 19 discovery disputes or the motion will be denied without prejudice and dropped from the Court’s 20 calendar. 21 All dispositive pre-trial motions shall be filed no later than August 1, 2022, and heard no later 22 than September 12, 2022, in Courtroom 2 at 8:30 a.m. before the Honorable Anthony W. Ishii, United 23 States District Court Judge. In scheduling such motions, counsel shall comply with Fed. R. Civ. P. 56 24 and Local Rules 230 and 260. 25 V. 26 Motions for Summary Judgment or Summary Adjudication At least 21 days before filing a motion for summary judgment or motion for summary 27 28 2 Non-dispositive motions related to non-expert discovery SHALL be filed within a reasonable time of discovery of the dispute, but in no event later than 30 days after the expiration of the non-expert discovery deadline. 4 1 adjudication, the parties are ORDERED to meet, in person or by telephone, to confer about the issues to 2 be raised in the motion. The purpose of the meeting shall be to: 1) avoid filing motions for summary judgment where a 3 4 question of fact exists; 2) determine whether the respondent agrees that the motion has merit in whole or 5 in part; 3) discuss whether issues can be resolved without the necessity of briefing; 4) narrow the issues 6 for review by the court; 5) explore the possibility of settlement before the parties incur the expense of 7 briefing a motion; and 6) to develop a joint statement of undisputed facts. The moving party SHALL initiate the meeting and SHALL provide a complete, proposed 8 9 statement of undisputed facts at least five days before the conference. The finalized joint statement of 10 undisputed facts SHALL include all facts that the parties agree, for purposes of the motion, may be 11 deemed true. In addition to the requirements of Local Rule 260, the moving party shall file the joint 12 statement of undisputed facts. In the notice of motion the moving party SHALL certify that the parties have met and conferred 13 14 as ordered above, or set forth a statement of good cause for the failure to meet and confer. Failure to 15 comply may result in the motion being stricken. 16 VI. Pre-Trial Conference Date 17 November 3, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. in Courtroom 2 before Judge Ishii. 18 The parties are ordered to file a Joint Pretrial Statement pursuant to Local Rule 281(a)(2). 19 The parties are further directed to submit a digital copy of their pretrial statement in Word format, 20 directly to Judge Ishii's chambers, by email at Counsels' attention is directed to Rules 281 and 282 of the Local Rules of Practice for the 21 22 Eastern District of California, as to the obligations of counsel in preparing for the pre-trial conference. 23 The Court will insist upon strict compliance with those rules. In addition to the matters set forth in the 24 Local Rules the Joint Pretrial Statement shall include a Joint Statement of the case to be used by the 25 Court to explain the nature of the case to the jury during voir dire. 26 VII. 27 28 Trial Date January 10, 2023, at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 2 before the Honorable Anthony W. Ishii, United States District Court Judge. 5 1 A. This is a jury trial. 2 B. Counsels' Estimate of Trial Time: 5 days. 3 C. Counsels' attention is directed to Local Rules of Practice for the Eastern District of 4 California, Rule 285. 5 VIII. Settlement Conference If the parties believe the matter is in a settlement posture and a conference with the Court would 6 7 be fruitful, the parties may file a joint written request for a settlement conference. 8 IX. Techniques to Shorten Trial 9 Not applicable at this time. 10 11 X. Related Matters Pending There are no pending related matters. 12 13 Requests for Bifurcation, Appointment of Special Master, or other XI. Compliance with Federal Procedure All counsel are expected to familiarize themselves with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 14 15 and the Local Rules of Practice of the Eastern District of California, and to keep abreast of any 16 amendments thereto. The Court must insist upon compliance with these Rules if it is to efficiently 17 handle its increasing case load, and sanctions will be imposed for failure to follow both the Federal 18 Rules of Civil Procedure and the Local Rules of Practice for the Eastern District of California. 19 XII. 20 Effect of this Order The foregoing order represents the best estimate of the court and counsel as to the agenda most 21 suitable to dispose of this case. The trial date reserved is specifically reserved for this case. If the 22 parties determine at any time that the schedule outlined in this order cannot be met, counsel are ordered 23 to notify the court immediately of that fact so that adjustments may be made, either by stipulation or by 24 subsequent status conference. 25 The dates set in this order are firm and will not be modified absent a showing of good 26 cause even if the request to modify is made by stipulation. Stipulations extending the deadlines 27 contained herein will not be considered unless they are accompanied by affidavits or declarations, 28 and where appropriate attached exhibits, which establish good cause for granting the relief 6 1 2 requested. Failure to comply with this order may result in the imposition of sanctions. 3 4 5 6 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: July 14, 2021 _ /s/ Jennifer L. Thurston CHIEF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 7

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