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Rule 16

Rule 16. Pretrialconferences, scheduling, and management conferences.

(a) Pretrial conferences. In any action, the court in its discretion or uponmotion of a party, may direct the attorneys for the parties and anyunrepresented parties to appear before it for a conference or conferencesbefore trial for such purposes as:

(a)(1) expediting the disposition of the action;

(a)(2) establishing early and continuing control sothat the case will not be protracted for lack of management;

(a)(3) discouraging wasteful pretrial activities;

(a)(4) improving the quality of the trial throughmore thorough preparation;

(a)(5) facilitating the settlement of the case; and

(a)(6) considering all matters as may aid in thedisposition of the case.

(b) Scheduling and management conference and orders. In any action, inaddition to any other pretrial conferences that may be scheduled, the court,upon its own motion or upon the motion of a party, may conduct a scheduling andmanagement conference. The attorneys and unrepresented parties shall appear atthe scheduling and management conference in person or by remote electronicmeans. Regardless whether a scheduling and management conference is held, onmotion of a party the court shall enter a scheduling order that governs thetime:

(b)(1) to join other parties and to amend thepleadings;

(b)(2) to file motions; and

(b)(3) to complete discovery.

The scheduling order may also include:

(b)(4) modifications of the times for disclosuresunder Rules 26(a) and 26(e)(1) and of the extent of discovery to be permitted;

(b)(5) the date or dates for conferences beforetrial, a final pretrial conference, and trial; and

(b)(6) provisionsfor preservation, disclosure or discovery of electronically stored information;

(b)(7) anyagreements the parties reach for asserting claims of privilege or of protectionas trial-preparation material after production; and

(b)(8) any other matters appropriate in thecircumstances of the case.

Unless the order sets the date of trial, any party may and the plaintiffshall, at the close of all discovery, certify to thecourt that the case is ready for trial. The court shall schedule the trial assoon as mutually convenient to the court and parties. The court shall notifyparties of the date of trial and of any pretrial conference.

(c) Final pretrial or settlement conferences. In any action where a finalpretrial conference has been ordered, it shall be held as close to the time oftrial as reasonable under the circumstances. The conference shall be attendedby at least one of the attorneys who will conduct thetrial for each of the parties, and the attorneys attending the pretrial, unlesswaived by the court, shall have available, either in person or by telephone,the appropriate parties who have authority to make binding decisions regardingsettlement.

(d) Sanctions. If a party or a party's attorney fails to obey a schedulingor pretrial order, if no appearance is made on behalf of a party at ascheduling or pretrial conference, if a party or a party's attorney issubstantially unprepared to participate in the conference, or if a party or aparty's attorney fails to participate in good faith, the court, upon motion orits own initiative, may take any action authorized by Rule37(b)(2).