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September 19, 2013
SUPERIOR COURT
Judge Diane Clarke Streett
Civil Case Management Preferences
Communications & Contacts Click Panel to Open
Contacts:
* Michelle Abraham, Administrative Specialist . Chambers . 302.255.2549
  * Jerome Brown, Judicial Civil Case Manager . Prothonotary's Office . 302.255.0720
  * Laura Makransky, Law Clerk . Chambers . 302.255.0641  
Chambers Fax: 302.255.2274
Prothonotary Fax: 302.255.2598
*Please advise the Administrative Specialist or Civil Case Manager by phone or email that a FAX transmission has been or is about to be sent to chambers or the prothonotary.
Only counsel, not legal staff, may write directly to Judge Streett. All correspondence must be signed by an attorney in the law firm of the attorney of record.

Any letter to the Court requesting Court action of some kind (in instances where a motion is otherwise not appropriate) must state the position of all parties or otherwise represent that opposing counsel or self-represented party could not be reached.

Email should not be used with Judge Streett except when (a) Judge Streett has approved same or (b) exigent circumstances exist. However, this does not preclude administrative-type emails, particularly to Court staff.

Administrative emails are generally not docketed.

Substantive emails are docketed and must always include the civil action number.

Comments or questions from lawyers, paralegals and other legal staff about Judge Streett's preferences are welcome.
Initial Stages
RELATED CASES: Counsel should always identify any 'related' Superior Court cases on the Case Information Statement filed with the complaint or with the answer so that the new case is assigned to the same judge. If counsel belatedly realizes that the Case Information Statement(s) omitted reference to another pending case and that the subsequent civil case was assigned to a different judge, please promptly notify the Judicial Case Manager for the judge assigned to the subsequently filed case.

SCHEDULING CONFERENCES: After responsive pleadings are filed, Judge Streett's Administrative Specialist will establish a date and time for a Telephone Scheduling Conference within a few weeks. If a party is self-represented, the scheduling conference will be held in a courtroom.

Another attorney in the law firm of counsel for a party (other than the attorney(s) who signed the complaint or the responsive pleading) may attend the scheduling conference provided (1) that attorney has a basic understanding of the case, (2) the case is not particularly complex, and (3) the attorney knows the trial attorney's trial availability. If counsel other than a signatory of the complaint or the responsive pleading plans to attend, counsel should notify chambers at least the day before the scheduling conference by phone to Judge Streett's Administrative Specialist. At least one attorney per party admitted pro hoc vice must participate in the telephone scheduling conference

If appropriate, counsel should confer about potential mediators before the Scheduling Conference. A directory of court-trained mediators is available on the Court's Web site. Counsel attending the scheduling conference should have authority to agree to a specific mediator, if at all possible.

After receiving a scheduling conference date and time, if all counsel believe that the case is likely to settle soon, counsel for plaintiff(s), speaking for all parties, may write to the Court requesting the scheduling conference's postponement. Unless ordered otherwise, the conference will be indefinitely postponed. Counsel for plaintiff(s) must then submit a status report within sixty days of the date of the postponed conference.

Note: Judge Streett understands that the establishment of a trial date with related deadline dates can be helpful to resolve cases, even those that are likely to settle promptly. Counsel should proceed with the initial scheduling conference, even if prompt settlement of the case is likely, if any attorney in the case believes that a trial date with related deadlines will help resolve the case.

If any attorney believes that there has been a delay in having a Telephone Scheduling Conference, counsel should contact the Judicial Case Manager to inquire about the delay. Reminder: a scheduling conference is scheduled only after all defendants or third-party defendants have (1) filed responsive pleadings or (2) had default judgments entered against them.

TRIAL SCHEDULING ORDERS: Judge Streett uses her standard Trial Scheduling Order (TSO) for most civil cases. The TSO sets forth firm deadlines. Failure to meet deadlines, without good cause, may result in the Court's refusal to allow extensions.

TSO amendments must be made by (1) appropriate motion or (2) joint stipulation, and ordered by the Court. If a party seeks to extend discovery or expert deadlines, without affecting remaining scheduled dates, the motion or stipulation should so state. Counsel should include a copy of the scheduling order when submitting such correspondence.


The Court's scheduling order will be faxed to counsel within 72 hours of the scheduling conference.

APPEALS FROM ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES, BOARDS, COMMISSIONS AND COURTS: If there is an unusual delay in the preparation of the record, counsel for appellant(s) should write to the Court to advise of the problem. Judge Streett may take appropriate action to accelerate this process pursuant to Superior Court Appellate Administrative Order, March 21, 1995. Oral argument is usually held in administrative appeals only if requested. The Court may convene a teleconference with counsel after the case's assignment to discuss its possible resolution.

MEDIATION: If the case is resolved through Mediation, counsel for plaintiff should promptly notify the Administrative Specialist and the Civil Case Manager by letter that is e-filed.
Motions & Briefing
FORMATTING: Contrary to Superior Court Civil Rule 107(b) all briefs and motions should have one-inch margins and be written in 12 pt. Times New Roman font and double-spaced. Exhibits to briefs, courtesy copies of motions, or letters must be individually tabbed. No briefs, exhibits, or appendices may be clipped or fastened with paper clips, binder clips, or metal three-ring fasteners, but must be stapled or bound. Case citations shall use Westlaw format for unreported decisions where possible; the Superior Court does not presently have ready capability to utilize Lexis. Exhibits and unreported cases not cited in Westlaw should be physically attached to the briefs and motions unless impractical because of their volume, in which case a separate compendium will be appropriate. Motions should not be double-sided. Always include an Order page.

ROUTINE MOTIONS: Routine Motions are defined in Paragraph IV.B.3.a. of the NCC Plan
. Judge Streett hears routine motions every Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. Any attorney should contact Judge Streett if that attorney believes the complexity or length of the argument suggests that another date would be more feasible. Routine Motions must be filed 10 days prior (excluding weekends and holidays) to the noticed date. Responses are due the Wednesday prior to presentation. A courtesy copy of both the motion and response must be filed in chambers. If no response is timely filed, the Court may deem the motion unopposed and grant the motion in advance.

DISPOSITIVE MOTIONS: Counsel should obtain possible dates and times for oral argument through the Administrative Specialist. If a party then does not file a dispositive motion within 4 days after obtaining the possible date and time for oral argument, the scheduled date and time may be canceled. Contrary to the NCC Plan, after reviewing an issue-dispositive motion, Judge Streett may order briefing and order a reply brief. The original motion, response, and reply should be e-filed with 2 courtesy copies promptly delivered to chambers. The motion response and reply shall not exceed 4 pages (unless permission has previously been granted to exceed the page limit) and shall include a notice page indicating the time for argument. If no response is timely filed, the Court may deem the motion unopposed and grant the motion. Contrary to the NCC Plan at IV.A.2.c., an appendix may exceed 25 pages as necessary.
Pretrial/Evidentiary Matters
PRETRIAL STIPULATIONS: The date for submission of a pretrial stipulation will be in the scheduling order. Generally, specific voir dire questions, any preliminary instructions to the jury, final jury instructions, and a verdict form should also be submitted on the same date as the joint pretrial stipulation. Final jury instructions should contain an index page and instructions should be paginated. Counsel is expected to utilize Superior Court Civil Form 46 for Pretrial Stipulations. All legal or evidentiary issues worthy of pretrial identification and focus should be identified in the stipulation with brief citation(s) of legal authorities relied upon. Legal issues raised in the pretrial stipulation will be resolved at the pretrial conference, if possible. Court submissions that are likely to be revised by the Court, i.e., proposed jury instructions and voir dire questions, should be submitted in WordPerfect or Word, in addition to courtesy copies.

PRETRIAL CONFERENCES: Counsel should come to the conference prepared to discuss the pretrial stipulation, voir dire instructions, and verdict form. This can help to focus the parties and the Court on the way legal issues will be formulated at trial.

Trial counsel, including pro hac vice counsel, must attend the Pretrial Conference. For good cause, such as distance and/or the nature of the case, pro hac vice counsel may be permitted to participate by phone.

Pretrial Conferences are reported.

MOTIONS IN LIMINE: Any particularly significant issue, including Daubert issues, should be raised by motion in limine. The scheduling order will have a date for filing such motions. The Court will usually rule on all motions in limine at the Pretrial Conference, unless resolution at trial or at some other time is more appropriate. Daubert-type motions in limine will presumptively be decided on a paper record.
Trials
BASIC PRECEPTS: If there is a pro hac vice attorney, local counsel is expected to attend trial but may be excused for good cause. However,if circumstances develop at trial, Judge Streett may require local counsel to attend, and/or actively participate, in the remainder of the trial.

As trial issues arise, counsel should confer with opposing counsel before bringing the issue to the Court's attention to avoid unnecessary surprise to any other party and to seek resolution of the issue without need of court involvement.

Trial days customarily begin at 9:30 a.m. and conclude at 5:00 p.m., with an hour for lunch (in addition to other shorter recesses). Judge Streett will usually meet with counsel in chambers at 9:30 a.m. on the first day of trial.

Counsel desiring a courtroom with specific technology support should contact the Bailiffs' Office, 302.255.0888, several days before the trial.

Counsel intending to use demonstrative evidence during opening statements should confer with opposing counsel several days before the trial and seek to resolve any issues regarding such evidence.