ORDER ON PETITION TO
TO LOCAL RULE 202(b)
(Doc. No. 78)
This case involves an automobile accident between Minor-Plaintiff Tanner Reed and Defendants. Defendants removed this case from the Kern County Superior Court. Reed has filed a petition for the approval of a settlement.
Pursuant to Local Rule 202(b), all settlements reached on behalf of a minor must be approved by the Court. "In those actions in which the minor . . . is represented by an appointed representative pursuant to appropriate state law . . . the settlement or compromise shall first be approved by the state court having jurisdiction over the personal representative." Local Rule 202(b)(1). Following approval by the state court, the minor is to file the state court approval order and all supporting and opposing documents with this Court. See Local Rule 202(b)(1). Once those documents are received, this Court "may either approve the settlement or compromise without hearing or calendar the matter for hearing." Id.
On September1, 2011, the Kern County Superior Court approved Reed's
settlement. See Court's Docket Doc. No. 7. The essential terms are
that Defendants have agreed to pay Reed $956,167.83 in exchange for
the settlement of this case. See id. at Doc. Nos. 7 & 8.*fn1
After attorneys fees, medical expenses, and miscellaneous
costs and expenses are subtracted, Reed's net recovery amounts to
$663,323.54. See id. The Kern County Superior Court ordered
$163,323.54 of the settlement to be deposited in a blocked bank
account that will belong to Tanner Reed, and the remaining $500,000 to
be placed in an annuity with Prudential Insurance Co. See id.
On September 1, 2011, Reed filed a petition to approve the settlement. Reed has submitted the relevant state court documents, including the order approving the settlement signed by Superior Court Judge Palmer on September 1, 2011. See id. Included in the state court documents are information from various health care providers. See id.
Since September 1, 2010, there have been two filings: (1) a stipulation signed by the parties to forego the initial scheduling conference in light of the settlement and the pending approval by this Court of the settlement, and (2) an order on the stipulation signed by the Magistrate Judge. See id. at Doc. Nos. 9, 10.
After reviewing the state court order approving settlement and all of the documents associated with that approval, the Court is of the opinion that the compromise is fair and in the best interest of minor-Plaintiff Tanner Reed. Furthermore, in light of the state court filings and orders, the Court does not believe that a hearing is necessary. See Local Rule 202(b)(1).
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
1. Minor-Plaintiff Tanner Reed's application for approval of settlement is GRANTED;
2. The settlement reached by the parties, as embodied by (and incorporated by reference for all purposes) Court's Docket Doc. Nos. 7 and 8, is APPROVED; and
3. Within twenty-one days of this order, the parties shall file the appropriate dismissal papers with this Court.