United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
AMERIHEALTH CARITAS LOUISIANA, INC.
PROMISE HOSPITAL OF ASCENSION, INC.
AMENDED SCHEDULING ORDER
RICHARD L. BOURGEOIS, JR. UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
the Court is Defendant's Consent Motion to Extend
Discovery Deadlines (R. Doc. 13) and Defendant's Consent
Motion for Expedited Consideration (R. Doc. 14).
Caritas Louisiana, Inc. (“Plaintiff”) commenced
this action on July 20, 2016, alleging that Promise Hospital
of Ascension, Inc. (“Defendant”) breached a
hospital services agreement entered into the parties on
October 15, 2012. (R. Doc. 1). Plaintiff seeks recovery of
$936, 777.31 in alleged overpayments to Defendant for certain
October 11, 2016, the Court issued a Scheduling Order
setting, among other things, the deadline to complete
non-expert discovery on May 22, 2017, the deadline for
Plaintiff to disclose its experts on April 24, 2017; the
deadline for Defendant to disclose its experts on May 24,
2017; Plaintiff's expert report deadline on June 23,
2017; Defendant's expert report deadline on June 24,
2017; the deadline to complete expert discovery on September
22, 2017; the deadline to file dispositive motions and
Daubert motions on October 27, 2017; and for trial to
commence on July 23, 2018. (R. Doc. 11).
10, 2017, Defendant filed the instant motions. Defendant
seeks extensions of all deadlines through the filing of
dispositive motions and Daubert motions by up to four
16(b)(4) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allows for
the modification of a scheduling order deadline upon a
showing of good cause and with the judge's consent. The
Fifth Circuit has explained that a party is required
“to show that the deadlines cannot reasonably be met
despite the diligence of the party needing the
extension.” Marathon Fin. Ins. Inc., RRG v. Ford
Motor Co., 591 F.3d 458, 470 (5th Cir. 2009) (quoting
S&W Enters., LLC v. Southtrust Bank of Ala., NA,
315 F.3d 533, 535 (5th Cir. 2003)). In determining whether
the movant has established “good cause” for an
extension of deadlines, the Court considers four factors: (1)
the party's explanation for the requested extension; (2)
the importance of the requested extension; (3) the potential
prejudice in granting the extension; and (4) the availability
of a continuance to cure such prejudice. See Leza v. City
of Laredo, 496 Fed. App'x. 375, 377 (5th Cir. 2012)
(citing Reliance Ins. Co. v. Louisiana Land &
Exploration Co., 110 F.3d 253, 257 (5th Cir. 1997)).
Scheduling Order informed the parties that “[j]oint,
agreed or unopposed motions to extend scheduling order
deadlines will not be granted automatically” and that
“[e]xtensions of deadlines governing discovery must be
supported with information describing the discovery already
completed, what necessary discovery remains, the parties'
efforts to complete the remaining discovery by the deadline,
and any additional information showing that the parties have
diligently pursued their discovery.” (R. Doc. 11 at
support of a finding of good cause, Defendant asserts that in
its efforts to respond to Plaintiff's discovery requests,
“it has identified witnesses who are no longer in their
respective positions with the company, ” and that
depositions of non-resident witnesses will be required. (R.
Doc. 13 at 2). Defendant represents that it “has had to
work diligently to locate” potential witnesses and
“is now in the process of interviewing potential
witnesses for fact witness depositions that will need to be
taken in this case.” (R. Doc. 13 at 2).
Court finds good cause to extend the remaining deadlines
through the filing of dispositive motions and Daubert
motions, but not to the extent requested. Given that the
Court issued the Scheduling Order seven months prior to the
filing of the instant motions, it is unclear why Defendant
did not have time to identify and locate potential witnesses
that no longer work for it. That said, considering that trial
is not set to commence until July 23, 2018, the requested
extension of the non-expert discovery deadline, as well as
the requested extensions and reopening of expert disclosure
and report deadlines,  can be accommodated. In light of the
foregoing extensions, the Court will correspondingly extend
the expert discovery deadline.
Defendant's assertions otherwise, an extension of the
dispositive motions and Daubert motions deadlines as
requested would disrupt the Court's ability to provide
adequate briefing and consideration of any dispositive
motions and Daubert motions prior to the trial date.
Accordingly, the Court will provide a shorter extension of
that deadline than requested.
on the foregoing, IT IS ORDERED that Defendant's Consent
Motion for Expedited Consideration (R. Doc. 14) is GRANTED.
FURTHER ORDERED that Defendant's Consent Motion to Extend
Discovery Deadlines (R. Doc. 13) is GRANTED IN PART and
DENIED IN PART. Pursuant to Rule 16(b)(4), the following
deadlines are established:
Filing all discovery motions and completing
all discovery ...