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Judge Van Bokkelen: Settlement and Mediation

The Court encourages private alternative dispute resolution in all civil cases. In cases to be tried to a jury, Judge Van Bokkelen will refer the parties for a settlement conference before a magistrate judge.

Judge Van Bokkelen does not schedule trial until discovery concludes. After discovery concludes, the parties will receive a notice from the Court asking them to state whether they intend to file motions for summary judgment. If they do, the parties will be referred for a settlement conference before a magistrate judge. At the settlement conference, among other things, the parties should be prepared to discuss the merits of their intended motions for summary judgment.

If the parties indicate that they do not intend to move for summary judgment, or if the settlement conference is unsuccessful, the Court will set a teleconference to schedule trial.

If a civil case is resolved by the parties, counsel in the case should immediately file an electronic notice of resolution. Jury costs will be assessed against the parties or counsel, or both, for failure to timely file electronic notice of resolution. Upon a report of resolution of a civil case, Judge Van Bokkelen generally vacates all pending motions and the trial date. The parties should then file a notice of dismissal consistent with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(a)