United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
HEVI MOHAMMED, individually, and as personal representative of the estate of ALI MUSTAFA SAEED, and the beneficiaries of the estate including K.S., and V.S.; DAWOOD AMEDI, individually and KAVI MOHAMMED, individually, and as parents and legal guardians of N. A. and L. A., and AMEDI'S LANDSCAPING, Plaintiffs,
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, BONNEVILLE POWER ADMINISTRATION; and RESOURCE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES, INC., an Oregon Corporation, Defendants.
HONORABLE RICHARD A. JONES, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter comes before the Court on Defendant Resource
Management Associates, Inc.'s (“RMA”) Motion
to Continue the Trial Date and Modify Case Schedule. Dkt. #
30. Plaintiff opposes the motion. Dkt. # 35. For the reasons
that follow, the Court DENIES the motion.
filed suit on October 4, 2016. Dkt. # 1. On February 22,
2017, the Court set the trial date and related deadlines.
Dkt. # 14. In September 2017, the parties stipulated to
extending their deadlines to disclose experts and complete
discovery. Dkt. # 22. Now Defendant RMA seeks a further
extension of time to complete discovery, which would result
in a continuance of the parties' April 2018 trial date.
Dkt. # 30.
governs motions to modify scheduling orders and requires the
moving party to show “good cause” for any such
request. Fed.R.Civ.P. 16(b)(4); see also Johnson v.
Mammoth Recreations, Inc., 975 F.2d 604, 608 (9th Cir.
1992), Paz v. City of Aberdeen, C13-5104 RJB, 2013
WL 6163016, at *2 (W.D. Wash. Nov. 25, 2013). The Ninth
Circuit explained the “good cause” standard for
the purposes of Rule 16 in Johnson:
Rule 16(b)'s “good cause” standard primarily
considers the diligence of the party seeking the amendment.
The district court may modify the pretrial schedule if it
cannot reasonably be met despite the diligence of the party
seeking the submission. Moreover, carelessness is not
compatible with a finding of diligence and offers no reason
for a grant of relief. Although the existence or degree of
prejudice to the party opposing the modification might supply
additional reasons to deny a motion, the focus of the inquiry
is upon Wash. LCR 7(e). Moreover, several courts have
observed that “citations are highly relevant in a legal
brief” and including them in footnotes “makes
brief-reading difficult.” Wichansky v. Zowine,
No. CV-13-01208-PHX-DGC, 2014 WL 289924, at *1 (D. Ariz. Jan.
24, 2014). The Court strongly discourages the Parties from
footnoting their legal citations in any future submissions.
See Kano v. Nat'l Consumer Co-op Bank, 22 F.3d
899-900 (9th Cir. 1994). the moving party's reasons for
seeking modification. If the party was not diligent, the
inquiry should end. Johnson, 975 F.2d at 609
proffered reasons for modification are that (1) RMA has
diligently met the Court's deadlines thus far; (2) RMA
will not be able to collect all the records it needs by the
discovery cutoff; and (3) new parties and new lawyers have
joined the case and need time “to get up to
speed.” Dkt. # 30 at 3-4.
Court does not find these reasons sufficient to overcome
RMA's burden to show “good cause.” That RMA
has managed not to violate the Court's deadlines thus far
is an expected floor, not a ceiling, of professionalism when
litigating in this forum. Moreover, RMA made conclusory
statements that it could not receive the necessary records by
December 22, 2017; conclusions, without more, are not
persuasive in this context. Notably, RMA nearly concedes that
other parties in this matter have been diligently progressing
through the discovery process while RMA has been watching
from the sideline. See, e.g., Dkt. ## 30 at 3
(“Plaintiffs have deposed several . .
. employees[.]”) (emphasis added); 40 at 2 (stating
that “the United States of America was the party that
noted the deposition of Plaintiffs” while RMA
“attended and participated in those
deposition.”), 3 (“RMA also attended the six
deposition of . . . employees noted by
Plaintiffs.”) (emphasis added). Finally, it is
unclear why new counsel-no doubt experienced attorneys-could
not “get up to speed” in a case that is not
overly sophisticated or technical.
simply not met its burden to show “good cause” to
modify the Court's scheduling order. For these reasons,
the Court DENIES the motion. The Court
denies the motion without prejudice; RMA may refile should
there appear to be actual issues in receiving the required
documents by the discovery cutoff.
 The Court strongly disfavors footnoted
legal citations. Footnoted citations serve as an end-run
around page limits and formatting requirements dictated by