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Sunday, November 29, 2020

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Hon. Marco A. Hernández, Chief Judge

Mary L. Moran, Clerk of Court

Local Rules of Civil Procedure

LR 73 - Magistrate Judges: Trial by Consent

(SeeFed. R. Civ. P. 73)

LR 73-1 Duties and Powers

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c)(1), and subject to the consent of the parties, every full-time, part-time, or recalled Magistrate Judge assigned to the District of Oregon is authorized to exercise civil jurisdiction over all assigned cases, including entry of final judgment and the conduct of any court or jury trial.

LR 73-2 Accelerated Trial Scheduling

Unlike District Judges who are assigned both civil and criminal cases, and by law must give scheduling priority to criminal cases, Magistrate Judges are assigned civil cases and criminal misdemeanor and petty offense cases only. Consequently, a Magistrate Judge is able to set earlier and firmer trial dates than might otherwise be possible for a District Judge for parties who consent pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 73(b). (See LR 16-1(b).)

LR 73-3 Review By District Court Judge of Rulings Issued Prior to Full Consent

If a Magistrate Judge issues a ruling or findings and recommendations before all the parties have consented to a Magistrate Judge, and objections are filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636, a District Judge will review the objections, even if all the parties consent to a Magistrate Judge subsequent to the issuance of the ruling or findings and recommendations.

The purpose LR 73-3 is to address the situation where all but one party has consented to a Magistrate Judge, and the Magistrate Judge then gives a favorable ruling to the non-consenting party. The concern is that the non-consenting party may try to foreclose a review of any 28 U.S.C. § 636 objections to the favorable ruling by filing a Magistrate Judge consent form shortly after receiving the favorable ruling. Under this rule, a District Judge will still review those objections.
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