United States District Court, C.D. California
December 10, 2014
Lisa Ann Colmery-Pinkerton
Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security Administration.
PAUL L. ABRAMS, Magistrate Judge.
PROCEEDINGS: (IN CHAMBERS) ORDER RE FURTHER PROCEEDINGS
IT IS ORDERED as follows:
1. Plaintiff shall promptly proceed with service of the summons and complaint on defendant in the manner required by Rule 4(i) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Such service shall consist of: (1) serving the United States Attorney or his/her authorized agent either personally at 300 N. Los Angeles Street, Room 7516, Los Angeles, California 90012, or by registered or certified mail addressed to the United States Attorney's civil process clerk at 300 N. Los Angeles Street, Room 7516, Los Angeles, California 90012; and (2) serving by registered or certified mail the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration at 333 Market Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, California 94105, and the Attorney General of the United States at 950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20530. Plaintiff shall file two copies of the proof of service showing compliance with this Order no later than May 27, 2014. Non-compliance with this paragraph may result in the issuance of an Order to Show Cause Re Dismissal for Failure to Prosecute.
2. In order to eliminate the burden on the parties of preparing and responding to an application for extension of time, IT IS ORDERED that defendant's time to plead to the Complaint is extended so that defendant's pleading must be filed within one hundred twenty (120) days of service of the Complaint. Defendant shall file and serve the certified administrative record on plaintiff at the same time that defendant pleads to the Complaint.
3. Within fifteen (15) calendar days of the filing of the defendant's Answer, plaintiff shall complete and transmit to the SSA Regional Counsel's office, with a copy served on the Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) in Los Angeles assigned to the case, a "Disability Litigation Voluntary Remand/Payment Request." (See attached form). The form shall not be filed with the Court. The completed form shall set out, as briefly as possible, the primary contentions or factors (both procedural and substantive) that plaintiff believes provide a basis for the Appeals Council to stipulate to a remand of the action for further administrative proceedings, or for payment of benefits. The form may be typed or legibly handwritten, and should be sent by mail or FAX to:
4. Within forty (40) calendar days after receipt of the Voluntary Remand/Payment Request, all of the following steps shall be accomplished: 1) Counsel for the Commissioner shall review the case in light of the matters raised in the Request; 2) the AUSA shall arrange for a telephonic settlement conference, if one has been requested by plaintiff, or if one is requested by Counsel for the Commissioner. Any such conference shall include plaintiff, an attorney for the Regional Counsel's office, and the AUSA assigned to the case; 3) Counsel for the Commissioner shall then review the case and reach a determination as to whether a voluntary remand or payment of benefits shall be accepted; 4) Counsel for the Commissioner shall then notify plaintiff by telephone as to whether a voluntary remand or payment of benefits will be accepted. If a voluntary remand or payment of benefits will be accepted, the AUSA and plaintiff shall jointly prepare and lodge a proposed Judgment with the Court within five (5) business days of the determination by the Counsel for the Commissioner.
5. In the event that there is no agreement as to a voluntary remand or payment of benefits, plaintiff shall so inform the Court within three (3) business days of that determination, in a filed and served pleading entitled "Notice of Compliance with Settlement Conference Order." In said pleading, plaintiff shall state whether he or she believes that a status conference should be held with the Court regarding any alleged procedural issues in the case that plaintiff believes should result in a remand of the case or payment of benefits without full briefing. The Court may then set a status conference on said issue(s).
6. If no status conference has been set, then within forty-five (45) days after the date of the filing of the "Notice of Compliance with Settlement Conference Order, " plaintiff shall serve and file a motion for summary judgment or remand, which shall not be set for a date certain, and which shall contain a summary of the proceedings before the Secretary and all medical and other evidence contained in the record that supports plaintiff's claim(s), with precise references to the applicable portions of the record, and discussion of disputed issues, each of which should be set forth separately with supporting points and authorities. It shall be considered compliance with this paragraph if plaintiff stipulates that the Administrative Law Judge fairly and accurately summarized in his/her decision the medical evidence contained in the record.
7. Within forty-five (45) days after being served with plaintiff's motion for summary judgment or remand, defendant shall file a cross-motion for summary judgment or remand, which shall not be set for a date certain and which shall contain defendant's response to plaintiff's motion, including a statement as to whether there are any inaccuracies in the summary filed by plaintiff; and shall address issues raised by plaintiff in the same order as plaintiff's argument. Defendant is not precluded from identifying and addressing additional issues.
8. Within fourteen (14) days after service of defendant's cross-motion for summary judgment, plaintiff may file a response.
9. No papers filed in support of, or in opposition to, any motion for summary judgment or remand shall exceed fifteen (15) pages in length, exclusive of the table of contents and the table of authorities.
10. Local Rule 56 shall not apply to the preparation of motions for summary judgment in this case. Therefore, there is no need for either party to file a Statement of Uncontroverted Facts and Conclusions of Law, a Proposed Judgment, or a Statement of Genuine Issues, unless otherwise ordered by the Court.
11. The case shall be deemed submitted without oral argument. If either party believes the case cannot be resolved by the summary judgment motions, and proceedings of a different type are indicated, plaintiff shall notify the Court and opposing counsel in writing so that a status conference may be set by the Court.
12. The deadlines set forth in this order are designed to give parties exercising reasonable diligence sufficient time to perform the required acts without seeking extensions of time. Accordingly, requests for extensions of time are discouraged. Any such request shall set forth specific facts showing that additional time is needed despite diligent attempts to meet a deadline. Requests for extensions of time shall be filed and served at least three (3) days before the deadline that is the subject of the request. Whenever possible, a request for extension of time should be made in the form of a proposed stipulated order.
13. The Clerk shall serve a copy of this order by United States mail on plaintiff and the United States Attorney for the Central District of California.
14. Plaintiff is advised that her failure to strictly comply with the terms of this Order may result in the action being dismissed for failure to prosecute and follow Court orders.