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United States District Court for the District of Idaho
July 25, 2005, Decided; July 25, 2005, Filed
CASE NO. CV 04-244-S-BLW
Currently pending before the Court for its consideration is Plaintiff's Motion for Court Ordered, Judicially Supervised Settlement Conference and for Reimbursement of Fees and Costs Associated with Prior Mediation (Docket No. 35), February 10, 2005. On May 6, 2005, the Court entered an Order denying Plaintiff Performance Chevrolet's request for a court ordered, judicially supervised settlement conference (Docket No. 80), but reserved its ruling relating to the request for sanctions pending the submission from both parties of supplemental briefs citing legal authority empowering the Court to award sanctions for conduct that occurred during the course of [*2] a private mediation. Having reviewed all briefing submitted, as well as other pertinent documents in the Court's file, and having heard oral arguments, the Court finds that, for the following reasons, the Plaintiff's motion should be granted in part and denied in part.
Following the Case Management Order (Docket No.21), which mandated that the parties file an ADR Plan by January 3, 2005, the parties submitted a Joint ADR Plan scheduling a mediation before Judge D. Duff McKee,1 a private mediator, on February 9, 2005. On January 6, 2005, Judge McKee sent a letter to the parties detailing how he expected mediation to proceed. Specifically, Judge McKee stated in his letter that he required the attendance of "the most senior individual within the company with personal responsibility over the issues in litigation and who is the decision maker on the matter." Judge Mckee further stated that it was "not sufficient for a party or company representative to participate only by telephone" without prior notice and an agreement between counsel for the parties.
Initially, both Performance Chevrolet and Market Scan indicated they were eager to settle this matter. When time came for the mediation, [*3] the two owners of Performance Chevrolet took the day off work and traveled from Mountain Home to Boise to appear with counsel, but Market Scan only appeared through its local counsel, Kevin Braley, and its in-house counsel, Greg May. Greg May stated he had "limited authority" to settle this matter, but he could obtain more extensive authority via telephone. Counsel for Performance Chevrolet maintains that Greg May "lied" when he stated he had limited authority to settle the matter. Taking offense to this characterization, Market Scan represents that Greg May cannot recall what statements he made during introductions, but counsel for Market Scan believes that Mr. May made it clear to Judge McKee and to Performance Chevrolet that final settlement authority would only be available through telephone. Mr. May submitted an affidavit to this effect, declaring that he never intended to deceive Performance Chevrolet about his settlement authority.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
2005 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51344 *; 2005 WL 1768650
PERFORMANCE CHEVROLET, INC., Plaintiff, v. MARKET SCAN INFORMATION SYSTEMS, INC., Defendant.
Subsequent History: Summary judgment granted, in part, summary judgment denied, in part by Performance Chevrolet, Inc. v. Mkt. Scan Info. Sys., 402 F. Supp. 2d 1166, 2005 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34884 (D. Idaho, Nov. 18, 2005)
Prior History: Performance Chevrolet v. Mkt. Scan Info. Sys., 2005 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58242 (D. Idaho, Apr. 5, 2005)
mediation, parties, attend, settlement conference, negotiate, settlement authority, sanctions, costs, judicially supervised, court order, good faith, preparing, settle, authority to settle, impose sanctions, settlement, directing, telephone, notify