U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Maurizio's Trattoria Italiana, LLC

3:18-cv-00338 | S.D. Cal. | Aug 9, 2019

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA Case No.: 18cv338-MMA(BLM) U.S. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION,

ORDER STAYING CASE FOR SIXTY DAYS, CONTINUING PRETRIAL Plaintiff, DEADLINES, AND SETTING DEADLINE v. FOR DEFENSE COUNSEL TO FILE A NOTICE OF APPEARANCE

MAURIZIO'S TRATTORIA ITALIANA, LLC AND DOES 1-10,

[ECF No. 26] Defendant. On April 26, 2019, the parties filed a Second Joint Motion to Extend Discovery and Pretrial Motion Deadlines. ECF No. 20-1. The parties sought to continue the remaining deadlines by approximately five months due to the health of defense counsel, who was hospitalized for a serious heart condition and was ordered to “avoid intense work activities such as trials, depositions, and travel for another two to three months.” Id. at 2-3; see also ECF No. 20-3, Declaration of Gregory A. Lutz Supporting Joint Motion to Extend Discovery and Pretrial Motion Deadlines. On May 1, 2019, the Court issued an Order Granting Second Joint Motion to Extend Discovery and Pretrial Motion Deadlines. ECF No. 21.

On August 5, 2019, Plaintiff filed a Status Report Regarding Defense Counsel and Discovery. ECF No. 23. In the report, Plaintiff stated that the parties “noticed the depositions of Defendant’s witnesses for September 6, 13, and 27. The deponents include, Maurizio Carbone, Defendant’s owner and manager, and five other employees.” Id. at 2. Plaintiff also stated that on July 8, 2019, it was informed by Mr. Russell De Phillips, an attorney and Executor of the Will of Mr. Lutz, that Mr. Lutz, defense counsel, passed away and that Defendant is still seeking new counsel. Id.

On August 7, 2019, Mr. De Phillips filed a Notice of Death of Counsel stating that Mr. Lutz passed away on July 2, 2019 and requesting a stay of the action to permit Defendant to find new counsel. ECF No. 24. That same day, Judge Anello ordered Plaintiff to file any response to Defendant’s notice and request by August 12, 2019. ECF No. 25. On August 7, 2019, Plaintiff filed its response. ECF No. 26. Plaintiff states that while it is not in favor of an indefinite stay, it will not oppose a stay of up to sixty days to permit Defendant to retain new counsel and get up to speed on the case “provided that the current discovery and motion deadlines set forth in Magistrate Judge Major’s May 1, 2019 Order are also extended for the same amount of time as the length of the stay.” Id. at 1-3. Plaintiff does not feel that an indefinite stay is appropriate given that (1) the case has been pending since early 2018, (2) the pretrial deadlines have already been continued twice, and (3) Defendant has already had more than a month to begin looking for new counsel. Id. If the case is stayed, Plaintiff requests that Judge Major hold a telephonic status conference in approximately thirty days for an update on Defendant’s search for new counsel. Id. at 4.
Good cause appearing, Defendant’s request for a stay is GRANTED . The instant matter will be stayed until October 7, 2019 . The remaining case deadlines are CONTINUED as follows:
Current Deadline New Deadline Fact Discovery Completion October 18, 2019 December 20, 2019 Expert Designations October 18, 2019 December 20, 2019 Rebuttal Expert Designations November 18, 2019 January 17, 2019 Expert Disclosures October 18, 2019 December 20, 2019 Supplemental Expert Disclosures November 18, 2019 January 17, 2020 Expert Discovery Completion December 18, 2019 February 17, 2020 Pretrial Motions [1] January 27, 2020 March 27, 2020 All other guidelines and requirements remain as previously set. See ECF Nos. 11, 19 and
21. The Court declines to set a telephonic Case Management Conference at this time. Defendant is ORDERED to retain new counsel and the new attorney must file a Notice of Appearance on or before September 5, 2019 .
IT IS SO ORDERED . Dated: 8/9/2019

NOTES

[1] If appropriate, following the filing of an order ruling on a motion for summary judgment or other dispositive pretrial motion, or in the event no such motion is filed, after the expiration of the pretrial motion filing deadline, Judge Anello will issue a pretrial scheduling order setting a pretrial conference, trial date, and all related pretrial deadlines. The parties must review and be familiar with Judge Anello’s Civil Chambers Rules, which provide additional information regarding pretrial scheduling.