Introduction

Frequently Asked Questions in the Drywall Litigation

  • Question: I am a plaintiff/defendant or represent a party in the Drywall MDL. Who do I contact with questions about the MDL?

    Answer: Plaintiffs or their counsel are directed to contact Russ Herman, Plaintiffsí Liaison Counsel, with questions. Mr. Herman may be reached at 504-581-4892 or rherman@hhkc.com.

    Defendants or their counsel are directed to contact Kerry Miller, Defendantsí Liaison Counsel, with questions. Mr. Miller may be reached at 504-599-8194.

    Homebuilders, installers, or their counsel are directed to contact Phillip Wittmann, Homebuilders and Installers Liaison Counsel, with questions. Mr. Wittmann can be reached at 504-593-0804 or pwittmann@stonepigman.com.

  • Question: How do I register for electronic filing via Pacer for the Eastern District of Louisiana?

    Answer: For attorneys who are already enrolled to use CM/ECF in another federal district, an E-filing Registration and Waiver of Training form needs to completed and faxed to the Eastern Districtís Clerkís Office at (504) 589-7698. Within 48 hours of faxing the form, a username and password will be emailed to counsel, allowing them access to the Eastern Districtís e-filing.

    For attorneys who are not already enrolled to use CM/ECF in another federal district, they may either file all documents on paper pursuant to the Eastern Districtís Local Rules or register and complete training to receive an e-filing account for the Eastern District. The link for registration and training for e-filing in the Eastern District is http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/cmecf/cm_ecf_training.htm.

    Please see paragraph 10 of Pretrial Order No.1 for more details.

  • Question: If I am not licensed to practice law in the Eastern District of Louisiana do I need local counsel and pro hac vice admittance to the E.D. La.?

    Answer:
    Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1, paragraph 12, attorneys admitted to practice and in good standing in any United States District Court are admitted pro hac vice in this litigation, and the requirements of Local Rules 83.2.6E and 83.2.7 are waived. Association of local counsel is not required.
  • Question: Iíve been served in the MDL. What do I do now?

    Answer: The Court urges all parties to first acquaint themselves with the Pretrial Orders issued in the MDL. These documents govern all parties and all filings in the MDL. The Pretrial Orders can be found on the Courtís website at http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/Drywall/Orders/Orders.htm. The Court also urges all parties to read through the most recent Minute Entries from its monthly Status Conferences. These documents can also be found on the Courtís website at http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/Drywall/MinuteEntries/ME.htm.

    Upon reading these documents, counsel will learn that he or she needs to do the following once he or she enters the MDL litigation:

    1. Provide the appropriate Liaison Counsel with contact information for service pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 5, using the form attached to Pretrial Order No.5A.
    2. Sign up for LexisNexis File & Serve to receive electronic service of documents filed in the MDL pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 6.
    3. Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1F, file a Notice of Appearance on behalf of your client within 20 days of service of the Complaint. Numerous examples can be found in the MDL docket.
    4. Complete and return the appropriate Profile Form to Liaison Counsel pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 11, Pretrial Order No. 12 or Pretrial Order No. 14A. Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1F, Plaintiffs shall submit a Plaintiff Profile Form within 40 days of filing a complaint, and Defendants shall submit the appropriate profile form within 40 days of service of the Complaint. Profile forms are to be provided to Liaison Counsel, not filed with the Court or LexisNexis File & Serve.
    5. Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1F, all defendants are granted an automatic extension of time to respond to Complaints. Responsive pleadings are now due 50 days after service of the Complaint. It is not necessary to file a consent motion for extension of time to respond to the Complaint. Please also note that the previous stay on the filing of responsive pleadings and motions was lifted in Pretrial Order No. 1C, Pretrial Order No. 1D, and Pretrial Order No. 1E.
  • Question: How do I file a document once my case has been consolidated with the MDL?

    Answer: Once your case is consolidated into the MDL, all documents are to be filed into the MDL master docket, not the individual case docket. Specifically, all documents will be filed into the MDL case number, 09-md-2047. The caption of each filed document must also denote that the document references your specific individual case number, such as 09-6687. Please see paragraphs 9 and 10 of Pretrial Order No. 1 for more information.

    Additionally, all documents must uploaded to LexisNexis File & Serve pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 6.

  • Question: How do I find a document for a case that has been consolidated with the MDL?

    Answer: All documents filed in a case after it has been consolidated with the MDL will be found in the MDL docket, case no. 09-md-2047. Generally, only the complaint will be found in the individual case docket. Each document filed into the MDL is labeled either as applying to all cases in the MDL or to a specific case in the MDL. To find documents filed in reference to a specific case, do a "control + f" search in the MDL docket report page and search the number of the individual case.

    Additionally, all documents can be found in LexisNexis File & Serve.

  • Question: I want to file a motion and I know that the Local Rules require a Notice of Hearing, but Pretrial Order No. 1C provides that the hearing dates for all motions are continued until the Court sets a special hearing date. What hearing date do I use for my Notice of Hearing?

    Answer: Use the Courtís next available civil motions hearing date (every other Wednesday) as the hearing date in your Notice of Hearing. This will prevent your motion from being marked deficient under the Local Rules. But for practical purposes, once the motion is filed, the Clerkís Office will terminate the hearing date on the record and set a special hearing date as directed by the court.

  • Question: I filed a motion, when will it be heard?

    Answer: Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1C, the hearing dates for all motions filed in the MDL are continued until the Court sets the motion for a special hearing date. At recent monthly status conferences, the Court has declared its intent to, when appropriate, consider all pending motions, categorize these motions, and set them for hearing.

  • Question: I received notice that a motion was filed in the MDL which relates to my case, when will this motion be heard and when do I need to file a response?

    Answer: Pursuant to Pretrial Order No. 1C, the hearing dates for all motions are continued until the Court sets the motion for a special hearing date. Then, all responses to the motion are due two (2) weeks before the hearing date.

  • Question: I would like to know about upcoming monthly status conferences, hearings, and trials. Where can I find this information?

    Answer: The Calendar link on the Courtís Drywall Website, http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/Drywall/Calendar.htm, contains the most up-to-date information on all monthly status conferences, hearings, and trials in MDL 2047.

  • Question: I would like to listen to the Courtís monthly status conference by telephone, where do I find the call-in information.

    Answer: The conference call information for all MDL proceedings for which a conference call has been established can be found on the Courtís Drywall Website under the Calendar link, http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/Drywall/Calendar.htm.

  • Question: I would like a copy of the transcript from a conference or hearing, who do I contact for a copy?

    Answer: Transcripts from the monthly Status Conferences are available on the Courtís Drywall Website 90 days after the conference at http://www.laed.uscourts.gov/Drywall/Transcripts/Transcripts.htm. All transcripts can also be obtained from the Official Court Report who transcribed the conference at the approved rate of payment. The name of the reporter can be found in the first paragraph of the minute entry for the conference or hearing.

  • Question: I filed a motion, will it be heard on oral argument?

    Answer: Pursuant to the Eastern Districtís Local Rule 78.1E, a party desiring oral argument must file a separate written request for oral argument. Otherwise, the motion will be considered by the Court based upon the briefs, taking the motion under advisement on the allotted hearing date. There are numerous examples of requests for oral argument in the MDL docket.