Honorable Douglas F. McCormick

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Magistrate Judge

Santa Ana

Ronald Reagan Federal Building and United States Courthouse, 411 W. Fourth St., Santa Ana, CA 92701, Courtroom 6B, 6th Floor

Law and Motion Schedule: 

Tuesdays at 10:00 a.m. It is not necessary to clear a motion date with the Court’s clerk prior to filing the motion, although the Court reserves the right to sua sponte continue motions or decide them on the papers without oral argument.

Consent in Civil Cases
The Court participates in both the Central District's voluntary consent program and direct assignment program. More information about the voluntary consent program is available here. The Court has also attached below its expedited trial procedure, which offers the parties an abbreviated, efficient, and cost effective litigation and trial process.

Judge's Procedures: 
  1. HEARINGS: Unless otherwise directed by the Court, civil motions are heard on Tuesdays at 10:00 a.m. It is not necessary to clear a motion date with the Court’s clerk prior to filing the motion, although the Court reserves the right to sua sponte continue motions or decide them on the papers without oral argument.
  2. DISCOVERY MOTIONS: Discovery motions are to be calendared before the magistrate judge unless otherwise ordered by the district judge. Compliance with Local Rule 37-1 is required.
    With the agreement of the parties, the Court will conduct informal telephonic conferences to resolve discovery disputes outside the formal Local Rule 37 procedures.
    Before any such telephonic conference, the parties must engage in the pre-filing conference of counsel required by Local Rule 37-1. During such conference, the parties should consider whether the issue can be presented through an informal telephone conference rather than through the filing of a formal motion. Should the parties agree to an informal telephonic conference, the prospective moving party should contact the Court’s Courtroom Deputy by e-mail at DFM_Chambers@cacd.uscourts.gov to schedule a conference. The prospective moving party should be prepared to provide the Court’s Courtroom Deputy with at least three proposed dates and times for a telephonic conference. The Court prefers to conduct its telephonic conferences at 9:30 am.
    At least 24 hours before the telephonic conference, unless a different deadline is set by the Court, the parties shall submit letters of no more than 2 pages in length providing a synopsis of the discovery dispute and what meet and confer efforts have been undertaken. Absent court order, such letters should not be filed; rather, letters should be e-mailed to DFM_Chambers@cacd.uscourts.gov and copied to all counsel. No paper courtesy copy is required.
    After the telephonic conference, the Court may issue an order ruling on the issues presented. The Court may also order further briefing if the Court determines that the issues cannot be resolved without further briefing. If the Court orders further briefing, the Court may or may not order the parties to follow the provisions of Local Rule 37-2 et seq.
  4. TENTATIVE RULINGS: Tentative rulings are issued as appropriate. If issued, they will be available by clicking on the "Tentative Rulings" link above after Noon on the business day before the hearing and/or approximately 1/2 hour prior to the hearing in the courtroom. If all parties submit on the tentative ruling, please advise the Courtroom Deputy, and no appearance will be required.
  5. EX PARTE APPLICATIONS: Compliance with Local Rules 7-19 and 7-19.1 is required. An ex parte application is usually considered on the papers only. If the application is opposed, opposition papers should be filed no later than noon on the first court day following service of the application. In most cases, the Court will wait until that time before ruling. If needed, the Court will schedule a hearing. Discovery disputes should generally not be brought to the Court’s attention in an ex parte application.
  6. CHAMBERS COPIES: Until further notice, no mandatory chambers copies are required. Electronic copies of proposed orders, in Microsoft Word or WordPerfect format, MUST be e-mailed to the Court at DFM_Chambers@cacd.uscourts.gov.
  7. TELEPHONIC APPEARANCES: Any party who wishes to appear at a hearing by telephone must make such a request at least two court days before the hearing.
  8. SETTLEMENT CONFERENCES: The parties should contact the court clerk about dates available for settlement conferences. The proposed date(s) should be at least two weeks in advance. All settlement conference papers should be delivered directly to the Judge’s chambers on the 6th floor. In lieu of personal delivery, settlement conference papers may be emailed to chambers at DFM_Chambers@cacd.uscourts.gov.
  9. CONTACTS WITH CHAMBERS: Counsel are not allowed to call chambers or the Court’s law clerks unless specifically directed to do so by the Court or the Court’s clerk.
  10. CONTINUANCES: To request a continuance of any scheduled court proceeding: Submit a stipulation and proposed order no less than 3 business days before the scheduled hearing.
  11. CALENDAR CONFLICTS: In the event of a calendar conflict, counsel should immediately advise the Court’s clerk telephonically and attempt to secure other counsel’s agreement to stipulate to a new date. If opposing counsel will not agree to a continuance, the request should be made by ex parte application.
  12. CRIMINAL DUTY: Federal law enforcement agents and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are encouraged to advise the courtroom deputy clerk in advance of the anticipated submission of warrants, criminal complaints, and other applications for the Court’s review.
  13. TRANSCRIPTS AND RECORDINGS: For general information on how to order a transcript of any reported or digitally recorded proceeding, please contact (213) 894-3015 or visit the court website (www.cacd.uscourts.gov) section referring to Court Reporter/Recorder Transcripts. If you require an estimate of cost for the preparation of a transcript, contact the court reporter/recorder for the desired proceeding.
    To determine the court reporter/recorder for a particular proceeding, go to the Court Reporter Schedule web page and click on View by Date. Once you have determined the correct court reporter/recorder for the desired session, click on Court Reporter Phone and Email List for contact information.
  14. INTERPRETERS: It is the responsibility of the requesting party to secure its own interpreter for a particular matter on a civil case. The requesting party may arrange for an outside interpreter or may make an arrangement with the Court Interpreter Services Manager at [213-894-4559] to secure an interpreter. The requesting party will bear the cost.
  15. STIPULATED PROTECTIVE ORDERS: The Court recognizes that protective orders facilitate the exchange of materials in the discovery process.  Even where the parties stipulate to a protective order, however, the Court must independently determine if good cause exists for the issuance of the order. See Beckman Indus., Inc. v. Int'l Ins. Co., 966 F.2d 470, 475 76 (9th Cir. 1992). The Court thus recommends that each protective order include a separate "GOOD CAUSE STATEMENT" that sets forth the reasons establishing good cause.  The Court cannot agree to "seal all confidential documents." "A party asserting good cause bears the burden, for each particular document it seeks to protect, of showing that specific prejudice or harm will result if no protective order is granted." Foltz v. State Farm Mut. Auto Ins. Co., 221 F.3d 1122, 1130 (9th Cir. 2003); see also Beckman, 966 F.2d at 476 ("[B]road allegations of harm, unsubstantiated by specific examples or articulated reasoning, do not satisfy the Rule 26(c) test.").  If confidential material is included in any papers to be filed in Court, such papers shall be accompanied by an application, pursuant to Local Rule 79-5.1, to file the papers - or the confidential portion thereof - under seal. The application shall be directed to the judge to whom the papers are directed. Pending the ruling on the application, the papers or portions thereof subject to the sealing application shall be lodged under seal. In the event of a dispute regarding the designation of confidential information, the procedure for obtaining a decision from the Court is that set forth in Local Rule 37.
  16. CRIMINAL E-FILING PILOT PROJECT REQURIEMENTS: In accordance with General Order 19-01 and the Local Rules of the Central District of California, counsel are directed to email the quality control notification to DFM_CrimDuty@cacd.uscourts.gov, along with the final version of the documents to be reviewed and signed.  The following practices must also be followed:
    1. Chamber copies must include the CM/ECF heading showing that the documents being submitted for signature have been e-filed. 
    2. Federal law enforcement agents and the U.S. Attorney's Office shall advise the Courtroom Deputy Clerk in advance of anticipated submission of lengthy affidavits in support of warrants, criminal complaints and other applications for the Court's review.
    3. Chambers will not make or print copies for conforming.  Conformed copies will only be given using the copy brought by the agent.
    4. If counsel amends a document, they must promptly notify the Courtroom Deputy Clerk and indicate why the document is being amended.
    5. Failure to comply with the above requirements may result in delay of processing.
  17. LAW CLERK AND EXTERN POSITIONS: Questions regarding law clerk/extern positions: Submit letter, resume, and writing sample to chambers.
  18. SPECIAL APPEARANCES: The Court does not permit special appearances. Counsel of record shall appear at all court proceedings.
  19. Procedure for Presenting Documents for Sealing in Civil Cases. Effective December 1, 2015, all parties and counsel must comply with all steps of the multi-step procedure set forth in Local Rule 79-5. Refer to attached Guide.