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How-To: Complete the Case Management Report

Background: You are litigating a federal case
Problem: You are unsure how to complete the Case Management Report
Solution: You follow this guide for completing the Federal Case Management Report

I. Definitions

Pre-Trial Conference
in civil procedure, a conference held after the pleadings have been filed and before the trial begins, for the purpose of bringing the parties together to outline discovery proceedings, and define the issues to be tried. Courts often use the pretrial conference as an opportunity to encourage settlement.

In criminal procedure, a pretrial conference is also used to review evidentiary issues prior to trial, but because of the privilege against self-incrimination and the presumption of innocence, it is not as comprehensive or useful to the parties as in civil cases.

II. Legal Citations

Rule 26(f) Fed. R. Civ. P. | Conference of the Parties; Planning for Discovery
"(2) Conference Content; Parties' Responsibilities. In conferring, the parties must consider the nature and basis of their claims and defenses and the possibilities for promptly settling or resolving the case; make or arrange for the disclosures required by Rule 26(a)(1); discuss any issues about preserving discoverable information; and develop a proposed discovery plan. The attorneys of record and all unrepresented parties that have appeared in the case are jointly responsible for arranging the conference, for attempting in good faith to agree on the proposed discovery plan..."
[Repealed] Local Rule 3.05(c)(2) USFLMD | Case Management
"(C)The case management report shall include:
(i) the [dates, times, and attendees of the meeting]...

(ii) a date for the [initial disclosures]...

(iii) a discovery plan which shall include a detailed description...

(iv) a final date for the filing of all motions for leave to...

(v) a statement concerning... alternative dispute resolution...

(vi) a date [for] a final pretrial conference and trial...

(vii) the signature of all counsel and all unrepresented parties...

(viii) a statement assessing the need for a [pretrial conference]"
Local Rule 16.1 USFLND | Case Management
"In a civil case in which the attorneys must confer under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(f), the conference must occur as soon as practicable. The Court may — and ordinarily will — enter an order modifying the deadline for the conference. If an order has not been entered, the deadline is determined by the Federal Rules and is ordinarily the earlier of 69 days after any defendant has appeared or 99 days after the first service of process on any defendant. A party may seek discovery before the conference only when authorized by the Federal Rules, by stipulation, or by an order in the case."
Local Rule 16.1(b) USFLSD | Pretrial Procedure in Civil Actions
"2) Conference Report. The attorneys of record and all unrepresented parties that have appeared in the case are jointly responsible for submitting to the Court, within fourteen (14) days of the conference, a written report outlining the discovery plan and discussing:
(A) the likelihood of settlement;

(B) the likelihood of appearance in the action of additional parties;

(C) proposed limits on the time:..."

III. Samples

# PDF Comments
1 logoAdobe TBD case. Joint Filing (attorney + pro se litigant). iconPriceTag
2 logoAdobe TBD case. Unilateral Filing. iconPriceTag

IV. Templates

# Link Comments
1USFLMD Version | Replace placeholder tags with real information (eg "[plfName]" becomes "John Doe").iconPriceTag
2USFLND Version | Replace placeholder tags with real information (eg "[plfName]" becomes "John Doe").iconPriceTag
3Official Form (≈ 2021; USFLMD).Free

V. Quick Commentary

  • Crucial Note: File this document before the deadline!
  • Feel free to use the template (see Part III - above) to help draft your 'Case Management Report'
  • Download as many sample documents as you'd like
  • Prepare for your phone call/meeting
    • Fill out the file according to
      1. your circumstances; and
      2. the guidelines of court
    • Proofread your document as much as possible
  • Email the Word Document to the other party prior to the meeting/call
  • Edit the document according to your conversation with the other party
  • Email the edited Word Document to the other party for approval
  • Save the final version as a PDF file.
  • File the final version in court

V. Quick Analysis

  • The expert witness reports are exchanged in a staggered fashion
    • The plaintiff discloses his/hers first
    • Then the defendant discloses its expert witnesses (usually about 1 month later)
  • Discovery Deadlines are typically 6-12 months after initial disclosures
  • The items in the template appear in chronological order (eg, "discovery deadlines" occur after "initial disclosures", etc.)
For deeper analysis, please see TBD's analysis on the federal case management report

VII. Additional Notes

  • This is an important document.
  • The court expects you and your opponent to take a non-adversarial approach to the case management meeting.

VIII. Additional resources

VIII. Conclusion

With the use of the template (as well as the samples above), you can more easily complete the case management report.


Congratulations! You're now booked up on how to complete the case management report!

Please get the justice you deserve.


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