Office of the Clerk of Court
Michael E. Kunz, Clerk of Court
MDL 875
Procedures
 Settlement Conference Procedures
 Motion Procedures
 Trial Procedures
 Remand Procedures
 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Newly Transferred Cases

Settlement Conference Procedures
A party wishing to have a settlement conference, should follow the following procedures:

1. Any party may request a settlement conference in their case.

2. In order to obtain a date for your settlement conference, please write or call Judge Robreno's MDL 875 law clerk and inform her of your request for a settlement conference.

3. The MDL 875 law clerk will assign the case to a Magistrate Judge, and the Magistrate Judge will set a settlement conference date.

4. Plaintiff shall give notice of this conference to each viable defendant in each case no less than thirty (30) days before the conference is scheduled. A Certificate of Notification of this notice shall be forwarded to the Magistrate Judge assigned to the case prior to the conference.

5. Plaintiff shall provide to each viable defendant a copy of plaintiff's most current medical report relied upon and a synopsis of the exposure evidence against that defendant. Plaintiff is directed to make a reasonable demand upon each of the defendants, and the parties must attempt in good faith to negotiate settlement of the case(s) prior to the conference date.

6. In preparation for the conference, parties must exchange information and complete such discovery as is necessary to be in a posture to negotiate settlement.

7. Parties to all unresolved claims in the case shall appear at the conference with necessary authority to settle the case(s) with their principals present or immediately available to them by phone.

8. The Magistrate Judge has the authority to require the principals to be present, to continue the conference for additional days or to postpone the conference with or without costs assessed.

9. In the event that a claim is settled in full as to any individual claim or defendant, the Magistrate Judge shall dismiss that claim or the claim against the settled defendant with prejudice pursuant to Local Rule of Civil Procedure 41.1(b).

10. In the event that a claim is not settled, the Magistrate Judge shall determine whether further settlement conferences will be helpful. If not, the Magistrate Judge shall inform the Presiding Judge whether the parties have negotiated in good faith and whether the parties are ready for trial or remand.


Motion Procedures
Contested Motions
If you wish to be heard on a contested motion, please follow the following procedure:

1. Any substantive, contested motion will be scheduled for a hearing date upon order of the Court. The Court will attempt to schedule hearings at the earliest possible date. When a hearing is scheduled, an order will be entered in each affected E.D. Pa. docket number.

2. In the Court's discretion, any motion may be continued to a different date.

3. All motions must be accompanied by a memorandum of law citing to the substantive or procedural rule which governs the motion.

4. If factual materials are relevant to the determination of the motion, they shall be appended to the motion.

5. Any party opposing the motion shall have fourteen (14) days within which to file and serve a response upon the moving party. This response must include all relevant factual information in opposition to the motion and cite to the substantive or procedural rule relied upon for opposition. See E.D. Pa. Loc. R. Civ. P. 7.1(c).

6. No reply to the opposing party's response shall be filed without leave of court, which shall be sparingly granted. However, parties have a right to file a reply regarding motions for summary judgment. See E.D. Pa. Loc. R. Civ. P. 7.1(c).

7. There will be a strict limit of one continuance granted per party per motion.
Administrative Motions
1. Any matter concerning scheduling or any administrative issue may be brought to the Court by motion.

2. All motions must indicate whether the opposing side has consented and attach a sample formal order stating the relief sought.

3. An administrative motion may be decided by the Court based on the papers without scheduling a hearing.


Trial Procedures
Parties wishing to proceed to trial, either jury or non-jury[1], shall comply with the following procedures:

NOTE: This is the trial procedure for parties that wish to have a trial before an Article I judge (with consent of the parties) or before an Article III judge. In either case, for cases where the transferor court is other than the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, parties must waive any venue objections in order for the case to be tried in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. See Administrative Order No. 22.

1. Write or call the MDL 875 law clerk.

2. Certify that all discovery has been completed and that the parties are ready to try the case within thirty (30) days.

3. Notify the MDL 875 law clerk whether parties will consent to trial before an Article I judge and whether parties have complied with Administrative Order No. 22.

4. The trial judge will hold a scheduling conference promptly and assign a trial date within thirty (30) days.

[1] Punitive damages in this case have been bifurcated and will not be subject to trial at this time.


Remand Procedures
Please see Administrative Order No. 18.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Newly Transferred Cases
1. What is required now that the case has been transferred to MDL 875?
All counsel must be registered on the Electronic Case Filing ("ECF") system for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania ("EDPA"). Details on how to register can be found on the MDL 875 Website. See http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/documents/MDL/MDL875/875-Revised%20A.O.%2023.pdf.

Plaintiff's counsel must also comply with Administrative Order No. 12, providing preliminary information about the case, within thirty (30) days of a case transfer to MDL 875. See http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/documents/MDL/MDL875/adord12.pdf. Administrative Order No. 12 submissions should be filed on the case's Eastern District of Pennsylvania docket. There is no longer an online database for submissions.

Additionally, all counsel must become familiar with the local and federal rules of civil procedure, as well as the procedures and administrative orders on the MDL 875 website. The MDL 875 website address is: http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/mdl875.asp.
2. What is the procedure for Pro Hac Vice admission to the EDPA?
To be admitted Pro Hac Vice for purposes of MDL 875, no formal motion is required. However, to be admitted Pro Hac Vice for purposes of MDL 875, each attorney must register on ECF (see above). See also Amended Administrative Order No. 23, and Rules of Procedure of the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation 1.4 ("Any attorney of record in any action transferred under Section 1407 may continue to represent his or her client in any district court of the United States to which such action is transferred. Parties to any action transferred under Section 1407 are not required to obtain local counsel in the district to which such action is transferred.")
3. What happens after my case is transferred to the EDPA?
A status and scheduling conference will be promptly set, and a scheduling order will be subsequently entered.
4. What occurs at the status and scheduling conference?
The status and scheduling conference is an informal administrative meeting. The MDL 875 law clerk will call all of the cases listed and inform counsel present of the status of each case.

The cases will fall into one of three categories:

(1) The case will be issued Judge Robreno's standard scheduling order.
(2) The case will be referred to one of four (4) Magistrate Judges that are involved in MDL 875.
(3) Plaintiff's counsel has informed the court that the case can be dismissed to the "bankruptcy only" docket (meaning only claims against bankrupt defendants will be pursued) or that the case has been settled in its entirety and can be marked "closed".

The status of all of the cases will be posted on the MDL 875 website shortly after the hearing.
5. Do I need to appear at the status and scheduling conference?
No. If you represent Plaintiff and provide the Court with the information required in the Order scheduling the status conference, appearance at the conference is excused. Defense counsel does not have to appear, and Defense counsel does not have to provide any information to the Court prior to the conference.
6. May I appear telephonically?
No. Telephonic appearance is not available.
7. There were motions pending in my case prior to transfer. What is the status of these motions?
All motions pending at the time of transfer that have not been granted or denied by the transferor court are denied without prejudice. Motions must be re-filed on the EDPA docket. If the motion was timely filed in the transferor court, it will be considered timely by the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. See Administrative Order No. 11, at 2; http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/documents/MDL/MDL875/Amended_AO11.pdf.
8. How and when will the case get remanded back to the transferor court?
A suggestion of remand will be automatically entered in each case within thirty (30) days of the final summary judgment hearing and pre-remand conference. The date of this conference is the last date listed in the scheduling order.

Parties may file a Motion for Suggestion of Remand prior to that date. If the case complies with all of the requirements of Administrative Order No. 18 a suggestion of remand will be entered. See http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/documents/MDL/MDL875/Administrative_Order_18.pdf.
9. What is the procedure after Suggestion of Remand has been filed?
The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ("JPML") is the best resource for procedures after the Eastern District of Pennsylvania has filed a Suggestion of Remand. See http://www.jpml.uscourts.gov. Once a Conditional Remand Order from the JPML is filed on the EDPA docket, the EDPA no longer has jurisdiction over the case and remand is effectuated.