Trials & Litigation

Judge suggests lawyer who opposed extension may want to brush up on karma concepts

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A federal magistrate judge in Miami is letting squabbling litigants know that their issues are less important than the COVID-19 pandemic.

In one case, U.S. Magistrate Judge Jonathan Goodman said the plaintiff had filed “a realistic and commonsense motion” to reschedule a trial and extend deadlines, the SDFLA Blog reports. The plaintiff reported that the defendant’s lawyer had opposed the motion.

“If defense counsel opposed the motion, then he is best advised to provide a comprehensive and rational explanation,” Goodman wrote in a March 25 order reproduced by the SDFLA Blog.

“Before filing this response, though, defense counsel may want to brush up on the concepts [of] karma, goodwill, grace, compassion, equity, charity, flexibility, respect, spirituality, selflessness, kindness, public spirit, social conscience and empathy,” Goodman said.

Goodman expressed exasperation in another case involving an alleged sexual assault on a cruise ship, Law360 reports.

In a March 21 paperless order, Goodman said lawyers had to keep things in perspective.

“We are living in an unprecedented situation,” Goodman wrote. “Nevertheless, the lawyers in this case have been exchanging snippy emails over the past two weeks over the scheduling of a corporate representative deposition. Moreover, defense counsel certified that this routine discovery dust-up is so important that it merits ‘emergency’ status. No, it doesn’t. … If all the issues we are currently facing were to be organized on a ladder of importance, this deposition-scheduling dispute would not even reach the bottom rung of a 10-rung ladder. It is painfully obvious that counsel for both sides failed to keep their comparatively unimportant dispute in perspective. Would the world end if the corporate deposition did not occur next week? Obviously not.”

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