Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance

Honorable Patricia Donahue

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Magistrate Judge

Roybal Federal Building and United States Courthouse, 255 E. Temple St., Los Angeles, CA, 90012, Courtroom 580, 5th Floor

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Recording, copying, photographing and rebroadcasting of court proceedings is prohibited by federal law. A violation of this prohibition may result in sanctions, including suspension of your license to practice before this court, referral to the state bar, denial of the right to appear by video or telephonically at future proceedings, criminal prosecution, contempt, denial of admission to future hearings, and any other sanctions deemed necessary by the Court.

Law and Motion Schedule: 

Civil motions are heard on Tuesdays at 10:00 a.m. Please check the Closed Motion Dates before filing a motion. Other than discovery motions, discussed below, it is not necessary to clear a civil motion date with the Court before filing the motion.

In criminal cases, contact the Courtroom Deputy Clerk to schedule all motions. ​

Judge's Procedures: 

​General Procedures

  1. To request a continuance of any scheduled court proceeding, the parties should submit a signed stipulation and proposed order. If it is necessary to file an ex parte application to seek a continuance, the application must comply with Local Rule 7-11 and Local Rule 7-19 and must contain opposing counsel's position.
  2. Procedures for filing an ex parte application: Strict compliance with Local Rule 7-19 is required. Any opposition must be filed within one business day of the electronic filing of the application. The Court will notify parties if a hearing is desired. Please note that, absent an emergency, ex parte applications may not be used to obtain a ruling on a discovery dispute. The Court's procedures for discovery motions in civil cases are set forth below.
  3. Counsel are not allowed to contact the Judge's law clerks.
  4. Inquiries regarding the status of a motion, stipulation or proposed order should be made to the Courtroom Deputy Clerk.
  5. Calendar conflicts: Advise the Courtroom Deputy Clerk in advance about a calendar conflict and attempt to stipulate with opposing counsel to an alternative date and time after clearing that alternative with the Courtroom Deputy Clerk.
  6. Procedures for bringing electronic equipment into the courtroom: Contact the Courtroom Deputy Clerk.
  7. For general information on how to order a transcript of any reported or digitally recorded proceeding, please contact 213-894-8958 or visit the court website (www.cacd.uscourts.gov) section referring to Court Reporter/Recorder Transcripts. For an estimate of the cost to preparate 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.

​Civil Procedures

  1. Stipulated Protective Order:

    1. General Standard. Stipulated protective orders must satisfy Rule 26 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Ninth Circuit’s standards for protective orders, and the Local Rules of this Court. The Court may enter a protective order only upon a showing of good cause. Kamakana v. City and County of Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1176 (9th Cir. 2006) (parties must make a “particularized showing” under Rule 26(c)’s good cause requirement for court to enter protective order). In addition, the Court will not enter a protective order that provides for the automatic sealing of all confidential documents. If confidential material is included in any papers to be filed in Court, such papers shall be accompanied by an application, pursuant to Local Civil Rule 79-5.1 to file the papers – or the confidential portion thereof – under seal. In the event of a dispute regarding the designation of confidential information, the procedure for obtaining a decision from the Court is set forth in Local Civil Rule 37.
    2. Model Protective Order. Attached below is a model protective order that satisfies these and other requirements. When the parties submit a protective order based on this model order, a redline (or comparison) should also be provided by email to PD_chambers@cacd.uscourts.gov that shows all differences between the submitted order and model order.
    3. Form of Proposed Order. All proposed orders approving stipulated protective orders must be submitted (1) in Word format, and (2) with the full text of the stipulated protective order.
  2. Discovery Motions:

    Generally. Discovery motions are to be scheduled before the Magistrate Judge unless otherwise ordered by the District Judge. The parties are advised to review the procedures and standing orders of the assigned district judge before filing any discovery motion. Strict compliance with Local Civil Rule 37 is required except as otherwise noted in these procedures. The Court may take a motion under submission without oral argument. See Local Civil Rule 7-15.

    The parties are directed to review and comply with the Civility and Professionalism Guidelines that appear on the Court’s website under Attorney Information.

    The parties are also directed to review the scheduling order issued by the District Judge assigned to their case for all provisions related to discovery, including the cutoff. That order sets forth the Magistrate Judge’s jurisdiction over discovery disputes.

    Some District Judges permit a discovery motion to be decided after the discovery cutoff; others require that any discovery dispute be fully briefed, argued, and decided, and that any relief ordered by the Magistrate Judge be completed, before the discovery cutoff. There are other variations as well. Disputes brought to the Magistrate Judge’s attention without sufficient time for decision within the strictures of the District Judge’s scheduling order will be stricken or denied.

    Brief Pre-Discovery Motion Conference. In the Court’s experience, discovery disputes often may be resolved without the need for formal motion papers. To facilitate the just and expedient resolution of discovery matters and to conserve the Court’s and the parties’ resources, the Court requires the parties to follow the procedure below for filing discovery motions. This procedure does not apply to ex parte applications (see Procedure 2) or where a party to the discovery dispute is in custody.

    First, as Local Civil Rule 37-1 requires, the parties must meet and confer in a good-faith effort to resolve any discovery dispute.

    Second, if the parties conclude that they have reached an impasse, within 1 business day of the last meet-and-confer, the movant must e-mail the CRD seeking a conference with the Court via Zoom to discuss the discovery dispute. The e-mail must include the following:

    1. At least three proposed times mutually agreed upon by the parties for the conference via Zoom;
    2. The discovery cut-off date in the case;
    3. A neutral statement of each issue in dispute; and
    4. A brief description of each party’s position on the dispute(s).

    For each dispute, the description may include a citation to no more than 2 pertinent cases decided by the Ninth Circuit, a district court in the Ninth Circuit, or (when applicable) the California Supreme Court or Court of Appeal. Each party’s description should be no more than 3 sentences per dispute.

    The movant must cc: opposing counsel on the e-mail. The email shall not contain attachments unless directed by the Court to do so.

    No discovery motion may be filed until the Court has conducted a pre-motion conference via Zoom unless the movant has obtained leave of Court sought by an ex parte application. The Court may strike any discovery motion filed in violation of this Rule and Procedure.

    Discovery Motion Practice. The Court dispenses with the joint stipulation requirement under Local Civil Rule 37-2. The Court requires parties to file moving, opposing, and reply papers pursuant to Local Civil Rule 7. Unless otherwise ordered in the pre-discovery motion conference, the following rules apply to discovery motions practice:

    1. If leave of Court to file a discovery motion is granted and the Court does not set responsive dates, or after a pre-discovery motion conference the Court directs the parties to file a discovery motion and does not specify responsive dates, counsel shall follow Local Civil Rule 7-4 et seq. and file a properly noticed discovery motion.
    2. No discovery motion may exceed 10 pages unless leave of Court is obtained in advance.
    3. The opposition may not exceed 10 pages unless leave of Court is obtained in advance.
    4. Any reply is limited to 5 pages.
    5. Copies of all filed documents, including declarations or any other attachment(s), must be emailed to the chambers email address.
  3. In a civil case involving an individual in custody, the moving party must file the motion without requesting a hearing date. The Court will review the moving papers to determine whether a hearing is necessary.
  4. Under Seal Procedures: Comply with Under Seal Procedures: Comply with Local Rule 79-5.2. Because documents filed under seal are visible on CM/ECF or Pacer only to the filing party and to Court personnel, a party electronically filing a document under seal may not rely on the Court’s CM/ECF System to effect service as provided in Local Rule 5-3.2.1. Documents filed electronically under seal must be served in accordance with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 5. Documents filed electronically under seal must be accompanied by either a Proof of Service in the form required by Local Rule 5-3.1.2 or a declaration explaining why service is not required. The submission of documents for in camera review is governed by Local Rule 79-6.
  5. Social Security Appeals. Neither side’s portion of the joint brief will exceed 15 pages in length.

Criminal Procedures

  1. Federal law enforcement agents and the United States Attorney's Office are encourged to advise the Courtroom Deputy Clerk in advance of the anticipated submission of warrants, criminal complaints, and other applications for the Court's review.
  2. Document Duty E-Filing Requirements. The government will email documents, including any proposed orders in Microsoft Word, to the Judge's criminal duty mailbox: PDCrimDuty@cacd.uscourts.gov. Please note that this email address is for criminal document duty matters only and should not be used for any other purpose.
  3. All warrants/criminal complaints will be attested by telephone pursuant to Rule 4.1 during the coronavirus crisis. Please contact the Courtroom Deputy Clerk with further questions.

Orders & Additional Documents