From the Litigation Practice.

U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland Amends Local Rules Regarding Discovery and Motions Effective July 1, 2023

October, 2023  | By Richard J. Medoff

Richard MedoffThe U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland recently approved amendments to its Local Rules, including changes related to discovery and motions practice, notable for anyone with cases in the court. The amendments took effect on July 1, 2023, following a notice and comment period, and include modifications of Local Rule 104 and 105 that increase the hurdles required before filing discovery motions and tweak the requirements related to motion filings. The notable amendments include the following changes, among others:

  • Local Rule 104.7 is amended to require counsel to make a “reasonable effort” to resolve discovery disputes and explains that a “reasonable effort” means more than sending an email or letter to the opposing party. Rather, it requires that the parties meet in person or by video or telephonic means for a reasonable period of time in a good-faith effort to resolve the disputed matter.
  • Local Rule 105.3 is amended to reduce page limitations from 35 pages to 30 pages for trial briefs and memoranda in support of a motion or in opposition thereto, and from 20 pages to 15 pages for reply memoranda, inclusive of footnotes.
  • Local Rule 105.4 is amended to reduce the threshold for when memoranda or briefs require a table of contents from 20 pages to 15 pages.
  • Local Rule 105.5 is amended to clarify that exhibits must be clear, well organized, and contain cross-references to the page numbers that relate to each exhibit. The amendment also directs parties to facilitate the court’s review of exhibits to include, for example, highlighting key language, when appropriate.

The new amendments apply to all cases filed on or after July 1, 2023, as well as to all cases pending as of July 1, 2023, to the extent practicable unless otherwise ordered by the presiding judge. A revised version of the Local Rules and a summary of all amendments are available on the district court’s website at: http://www.mdd.uscourts.gov/local-rules-amendments.

If you have questions about these amendments and their application, please contact attorney Richard Medoff at rmedoff@semmes.com.