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USA v. $822

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

January 12, 2017

USA
v.
$822, 694.81 in United States Currency Seized From Account No. XXXXXXXX7424 et al

          SETTLEMENT CONFERENCE ORDER

          HOLLY B. FITZSIMMONS, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         READ NOW AND COMPLY WITH THESE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY

         This case is scheduled for a settlement conference with the Honorable Holly B. Fitzsimmons, United States Magistrate Judge. Local counsel shall notify any visiting counsel of the date and time of the conference.

         A. PRESENCE OF PARTIES/PERSONS WITH AUTHORITY

         The parties are hereby ORDERED to be present at the conference. If a party is a legal entity, not an individual, a representative of the party WHO IS FULLY AUTHORIZED TO DECIDE ALL MATTERS pertaining to the case shall be present at the conference. The Court will not hold a settlement conference without all parties present. Availability of a party by telephone IS NOT PERMITTED without the authorization of the Court. Authorization must be sought, in writing, at least two weeks in advance, and must state (1) the reason for the request, and (2) the opposing party's position with regard to the request.

         In cases where a party requires authority from an insurer to settle the case, the party shall ensure that an insurance company representative with FULL AUTHORITY to settle the case is present at the conference. For a plaintiff, "full authority" means final authority to dismiss the case with prejudice, and to accept in settlement an amount or terms down to the defendant's last offer.

         For a defendant, "full authority" means final authority to commit a defendant to pay, in the representative's own discretion, a settlement amount up to the plaintiff's prayer or the plaintiff's last demand, whichever is lower.

         The purpose of this requirement is to have in attendance a person with both the authority to exercise discretion and the realistic freedom to exercise such discretion without negative consequences, in order to settle the case during the settlement conference without consulting someone else who is not present. FAILURE OF A PARTY OR PARTY REPRESENTATIVE WITH FULL AUTHORITY TO SETTLE THE CASE TO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE MAY RESULT IN THE IMPOSITION OF SANCTIONS. The parties should be prepared to spend the entire day in the settlement conference.

         B. PRE-CONFERENCE REQUIREMENTS

         1. Demand

         Settlement conferences are often unproductive unless the parties have exchanged demands and offers before the conference and made a serious effort to settle the case on their own. Before arriving at the settlement conference, the parties are to negotiate and make a good faith effort to settle the case without the involvement of the Court. Specific proposals and counterproposals shall be made. If settlement is not achieved before the conference, the parties shall be prepared to engage in further negotiation at the conference. Not later than 14 days before the conference, plaintiff's counsel shall contact defendant's counsel to initiate these discussions, if they are not already on-going.

         2. Ex-Parte Letter

         At least five (5) days before the conference, each party shall provide to the undersigned, in confidence, a concise statement, no longer than 3 pages in length. The statements shall outline the settlement negotiations to date, and identify where possible the obstacles or impediments which have so far prevented settlement of the matter, as well as describing the disputed issues and evidence expected to be offered at trial. The statements may be accompanied by exhibits (i.e. depositions, damages analysis, photographs, expert report, medical records), if these would be of assistance to the Court. Please prepare the statement so that it ARRIVES in ...


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