What is the process when filing within a Multi-District Litigation (MDL) case?

MDL Case Proceedings for the Southern District of Florida (SDFL):

1. An important objective with MDL cases is to have a complete record of the proceedings. To achieve this, most SDFL transferee judges will generally mandate that all filings be entered ONLY in the master case.
2. The transferee judge will usually enter an order consolidating all associated (“consolidated” or “member”) cases into the master case.
3. Within this order, the transferee judge will often grant counsel leave to file the associated case complaints in the master case and administratively dismiss the associated cases. These associated cases may be re-opened at a later date if remand to their respective transferor courts is ordered.
4. Attorneys should review the Order of Consolidation and may also want to inquire as to the judge’s preferences concerning case management.
5. MDL counsel of record from the transferor district courts can call the Attorney Admissions Clerk to inquire about receiving a User Name and Password to file via CM/ECF.
6. Attorneys rarely file documents with the SDFL in SDFL cases that have been transferred to another court where an MDL is proceeding.
7. If directed by the Court to file in an associated case, your filings will ONLY be in that particular case and will not have a docket entry in the master case.

** Remember: If counsel from a transferor district wishes to have his/her case transferred to a litigation in SDFL, they must request this from the Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation (JPML) first unless they are requesting that the judge transfer the case via another statute. Upon notification of the request, the JPML will review the case and probably issue a Conditional Transfer Order in that particular case or group of cases. They should not initially file a case in SDFL unless there is appropriate jurisdiction to file there.

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