Friday, April 28, 2006

A Bit Of Time (And A Lot Of Paper) Saved


If you hire a business firm to do your defense litigation work instead of a (mere) insurance defense firm, you might want to remind them to read the court rules. A couple of months ago, I wrote responses to a summary disposition motion. The plaintiff's counsel wanted to add material which pushed the motion and brief over the limit, so I told him to contact the judge's clerk to check their policy. Some judges are flexible, but this one wasn't - the attorney was informed that the judge would reject his answer and brief if they exceeded a combined twenty pages.

Fast forward to the latest summary disposition motion filed by the defense, which exceeded twenty pages between the motion and brief. I suggested that the plaintiff's counsel contact the court to see if it would still be entertaining the motion. Nope. It will have to be refiled in proper form by the plaintiff, and renoticed for hearing.

Once again, this is a mistake a second year associate at a (mere) insurance defense firm would have caught. I wonder if the business firm handling the case will refrain from billing the client for the time and costs associated with their mistake....

2 comments:

  1. You must have a higher opinion of associates at insurance-defense firms than I do. I am still getting motions from second (and later) year associates that don't conform to state Civil Procedure rules, let alone local rules.

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  2. Oh, it may be a touch of hyperbole. But the lawyer who signed the motion passed the bar 21 years ago, and her partner whose name appears below hers passed 34 years ago. Both claim "litigation" as an area of focus. You would think that one of them would have stumbled across the court rules by now.

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