The purpose of this order is: (1) to notify the parties of their obligation under Fed. R. Civ. P. 26, as incorporated by Fed. R. Bankr. P. 7026, to make Initial Disclosures and meet for a Discovery Conference; and (2) to modify those Rule 26 requirements in certain respects. As such, this order has no effect in any proceeding exempted under Rule 26(a)(1)(E) and (f) from the Initial Disclosure and Discovery Conference requirements.
1. The Discovery Conference. At least 21 calendar days before the status conference scheduled in the summons, the parties shall confer (in person or by telephone) at a "Discovery Conference." Plaintiff shall initiate contact regarding arrangement of the Discovery Conference. Defendant shall cooperate in fixing the time and place of the Discovery Conference. Except to the extent the parties stipulate otherwise, no party shall initiate or conduct any formal discovery prior to the Discovery Conference. The parties may conduct informal discovery.
2. Settlement. At the Discovery Conference, the parties shall consider the nature and basis of their claims and defenses and the possibility of an early settlement. The parties shall also discuss ADR options, as required by B.L.R. 9040-3.
3. Initial Disclosures. At the Discovery Conference, the parties shall arrange to make the "Initial Disclosures" required by Rule 26(a), without necessity of a formal discovery request. The Disclosures shall be made at or within 14 calendar days after the Discovery Conference. All disclosures shall be in writing, signed by the party or his or her attorney, and served on all other parties.
4. Discovery Plan. Unless:
(a) the proceeding is exempt under Rule 26(f);
(b) the proceeding seeks to recover money or property, or except a debt from discharge pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 523(a), of no more than $15,000, excluding interest, attorneys, fees, and costs; or
(c) the parties stipulate to the contrary in a writing filed with the court;
the parties shall, at the Discovery Conference, also develop a written Discovery Plan signed by all parties or their counsel, that reflects the parties' views and proposals concerning:
(i) what changes, if any, should be made in the timing,
form, or requirements of the Initial Disclosures;
(ii) the timing, subject matter, and limitations, if any, of discovery to be conducted after the initial disclosures; and
(iii) the subject of any orders that the court should enter under Fed.R.Bankr.P. 7016(b) and (c) and 7026(a)(1).
The Discovery Plan shall be filed within 14 calendar days after the Discovery Conference.
5. Pretrial Disclosures. Notwithstanding Rule 26(a)(3), pretrial disclosures shall be made in accordance with further order of the court.
6. Service hereof. The summons, complaint, and this order shall be served by the plaintiff within 10 days of the date of this order. A return or proof of service shall be filed within 5 days after service.
_____________________Deputy Clerk of Court