With a hat tip to the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin’s coverage of the 7th Circuit Judicial Conference, Northern District Judges Durkin, St. Eve, and Tharp offered several valuable practice tips for litigating before federal courts, that apply as well for IP litigators as for any litigator.
- Reduce litigation costs. For example, there is no need to appear for brief status conferences, when you can appear by phone and cut out significant travel costs.
- Think carefully before filing summary judgment motions. They are a “huge expense” and counsel have no reason not to file them.
- Consider consenting to trial before a magistrate judge. Magistrate judges can offer faster times to trial because they do not have to focus on the constitutional right to a speed trial in criminal matters. He explains “[y]ou get great judges. Same law. Same juries.”
Judge St. Eve:
- It is important to cooperate with opposing counsel. “Be nice. It’s not that hard.”
- Look at the judge’s website. Ignorance of the judge’s procedures and requirements does not start counsel off well with the judge.
- Instead of starting a brief with a recitation of each pleading and ruling, offer a “pithy, short, concise” statement of the issue to be decided.