Parrish v. Wal-Mart Associates, Inc. et al

Filing 21

ORDER GRANTING AS MODIFIED 20 Stipulated Request to Continue Expert Discovery Deadlines and Related Dates, signed by Magistrate Judge Christopher D. Baker on 3/28/2024. Dispositive Motions filed by 7/8/2024. Pretrial Conference CONTINUED to 10/21/2024 at 01:30 PM in Courtroom 4 (JLT) before District Judge Jennifer L. Thurston. Jury Trial CONTINUED to 1/7/2025 at 08:30 AM in Courtroom 4 (JLT) before District Judge Jennifer L. Thurston. (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 CARNELL PARRISH, 12 Plaintiff, 13 14 Case No. 1:23-cv-00284-JLT-CDB ORDER GRANTING AS MODIFIED STIPULATED REQUEST TO CONTINUE EXPERT DISCOVERY DEADLINES AND RELATED DATES v. WAL-MART ASSOCIATES, INC. (Doc. 20) 15 Defendant. 16 17 18 Background 19 Plaintiff Carnell Parrish (“Plaintiff”) initiated this action against Defendant Wal-Mart 20 Associates, Inc. (“Defendant”) with the filing of a complaint in state court on or about January 21 13, 2023. (Doc. 1 at 2). On February 24, 2023, Defendant removed the action to this Court. Id. 22 On May 24, 2023, the Court entered the operative scheduling order which, among other things, 23 admonished the parties that the case management dates set therein are considered to be firm and 24 will not be modified absent a showing of good cause, even if the request to modify is made by 25 stipulation. (Doc. 13 at 7). 26 On September 27, 2023, the parties filed a joint mid-discovery status report in which they 27 summarized their ongoing discovery efforts and identified no anticipated obstacles to timely 28 completing discovery. (Doc. 17). Accordingly, the following day, the Court vacated the mid- 1 1 discovery status conference set for the following week and reminded the parties of their 2 obligation to diligently pursue and timely complete discovery within the scheduled case 3 management dates. (Doc. 18). 4 The Parties’ Pending Request 5 Pending before the Court is the parties’ stipulated request for order extending expert 6 discovery deadlines, filed March 25, 2024 – one week after the time to conduct expert discovery 7 already had closed. (Doc. 20). The parties represent that on February 12, 2024, Plaintiff served 8 an untimely expert witness disclosure and omitted an expert report from that disclosure. Id. at 2. 9 The parties further represent that Defendant was unable to timely rebut Plaintiff’s expert 10 disclosure due to the late disclosure and lack of expert report. Id. To accommodate an upcoming 11 private mediation and preserve the parties right to engage in additional expert discovery 12 afterwards, the parties propose to remedy Plaintiff’s admitted discovery violation by requesting 13 an approximately six-month extension of expert disclosure and discovery dates that already have 14 expired. The parties acknowledge that the requested extension will require extensions also of the 15 dispositive motion filing and trial dates. Id. 16 In their stipulation, the parties offer no explanation as to why they delayed for more than 17 one month after Plaintiff’s discovery violation to seek relief from the Court – or why they waited 18 until expert discovery already has closed to request modification of the scheduling order. Such 19 delay is the antithesis of due diligence and good cause. See Jerpe v. Aerospatiale, No. CIV. S20 03-555 LKK/DAD, 2007 WL 781977, at *2 (E.D. Cal. Mar. 13, 2007) (“plaintiffs delayed until 21 after even the close of discovery to bring their motion to modify the scheduling order. This is, as 22 defendants point out, the antithesis of diligence” under Local Rule 144). 23 The Court acknowledges the parties’ efforts to mutually resolve the situation before 24 seeking Court intervention; however, the requested relief (a six-month extension of expired 25 discovery and future motion filing and trial dates) is unwarranted and unsupported given the 26 timing and nature of the discovery violation and level of diligence demonstrated by the parties. 27 Instead, the Court will grant a limited extension of already-expired expert discovery dates – to 28 the extent of ensuring any prejudice to Defendant resulting from Plaintiff’s discovery violation 2 1 is minimized – and continuing remaining case management dates in a manner that accommodates 2 the parties private settlement efforts. 3 Accordingly, it is HEREBY ORDERED, the operative scheduling order (Doc. 13) is 4 amended as follows: 5 1. Rebuttal expert disclosure deadline: May 8, 2024 6 2. Expert discovery deadline: June 7, 2024 7 3. Dispositive motion filing deadline: July 8, 2024 8 4. Dispositive motion hearing: August 19, 2024 9 5. Pretrial conference: October 21, 2024 6. Trial: January 7, 2025 10 11 IT IS SO ORDERED. 12 Dated: March 28, 2024 ___________________ _ UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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