Cage v. Multiband, Inc.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER re: 51 MOTION for Extension of: Time to Obtain Attorney filed by Plaintiff Anthers Cage motion is DENIED. Signed by District Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh, Jr on 12/15/14. (MRS)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
Case No. 1:12CV87 SNLJ
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on plaintiff’s request for additional time to obtain
counsel. Defendant has filed a response opposing the motion. For the following reasons,
the Court will deny plaintiff’s request.
Plaintiff filed this case on December 26, 2011, through counsel, Law Offices of
Brain R. Barjenbruch, L.L.C. On June 29, 2012, this Court entered an order allowing
Plaintiff to proceed pro se because plaintiff had been unable to contact his attorney and
his attorney was not admitted to practice in this Court. On December 7, 2012, Robert M.
Miller, William M. Wunderlich & Associates, filed an entry of appearance on plaintiff’s
behalf. On July 18, 2013, this Court entered a case management order setting the close of
discovery for March 3, 2014 and the deadline to submit dispositive motions as September
In accordance with this Court’s case management order, on August 29, 2014,
defendant filed its motion for summary judgment. On September 19, 2014, one business
day before the due date for plaintiff’s response to the motion for summary judgment,
plaintiff’s counsel filed a motion for leave to withdraw because plaintiff “has engaged in
a course of conduct that has rendered it unreasonably difficult” for his counsel to
continue to represent him and plaintiff had advised counsel that he intended to seek new
counsel. At the same time, plaintiff’s counsel filed a request for an extension of
plaintiff’s deadline to respond to defendant’s motion for summary judgment. The Court
granted the motion to withdraw and entered an Order extending plaintiff’s response
deadline on motion for summary judgment to October 20, 2014. In that Order, the Court
stated that no further extensions would be granted.
On November 17, 2014, the Court sua sponte issued an Order providing notice to
plaintiff that if he did not respond to the motion for summary judgment within twentyone days it would be taken up as an unopposed motion. Plaintiff did not file a response
to the motion on or before December 8, 2014 and still has not filed a response.
On December 12, 2014, plaintiff filed a request for additional time to obtain
counsel. Plaintiff’s request fails to state any reason why he has been unable to obtain
counsel or why he needs additional time to obtain counsel. Plaintiff had sufficient time to
obtain new counsel following the withdrawal of counsel. The parties’ pretrial
submissions are presently due to the Court on or before January 6, 2015, with a trial
setting on January 26, 2015. This matter has been pending for nearly three years. The
parties have had the Court’s case management order for more than a year. Plaintiff was
well-aware of the deadlines in this case. Under the circumstances, the Court will deny
plaintiff’s request. “Litigants do not have an absolute right to continuances to prepare for
trial or to obtain counsel.” Jones v. Hertz Corp., 4:10CV603 TIA, 2011 WL 5245454, at
*4 (E.D. Mo. Nov. 3, 2011) (citing Schooley v. Kennedy, 712 F.2d 372, 374 (8th Cir.
1983)(citing Grunewald v. Missouri Pac. R.R. Co., 331 F.2d 983, 986 (8th Cir. 1964))).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff’s request for additional time to obtain
counsel (ECF #51) is DENIED.
Dated this 15th day of December, 2014.
STEPHEN N. LIMBAUGH, JR.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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