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NFL and Easterling Plaintiffs Agree to Extension

2012 January 31

Nothing too excited has occurred within the last few days, so I figured I would provide a quick update.

On January 26, 2012, the Easterling plaintiffs and the NFL agreed to extend the due date for the plaintiffs to respond to the NFL’s motion to dismiss. This is generally the usual course of business in litigation, and parties are often willing to grant an extension of time. But of course, there is always an exception to this play-nice rule, and we may see some vigorous objections later down the road. But for now, the parties seem to be playing fair.

There are a few other reasons why the parties likely agreed to the extension. First, the parties are waiting for the Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) to decide if the cases will be transferred and consolidated to Judge Brody in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. This ruling–presumably granting the NFL’s motion to consolidate–should be made within the next few weeks.

Secondly, assuming the lawsuits are transferred to an MDL, Jude Brody will have to set new dates for the parties to exchange motions and engage in discovery. This is commonly known as a “Case Management Order.”

In other words, once the lawsuits are consolidated to an MDL all prior deadlines are void, and Judge Brody will preside over all pretrial proceedings.

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