Legal Memorandum: Response to Summary Judgment Motions in NE

Issue: What is necessary in the 8th Circuit to show good cause for an extension of time to respond to motions for summary judgment and motions in limine.

Area of Law: Litigation & Procedure
Keywords: Extension of time to respond to motions; Requirements
Jurisdiction: Federal, Nebraska
Cited Cases: 224 F. Supp. 2d 1228
Cited Statutes: Nebraska Civil Rule 7.1(1)(B); Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(b)(1), 16(b)(4); NECivR 6.1(a)(2); 7.1(h); Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(d); NECivR 6.1
Date: 12/01/2013

Under Nebraska Civil Rule 7.1(1)(B), a non-moving party’s responses to a motion for summary judgment is due twenty-one days after the motions and supporting briefs have been served.  See also id. r. 56(b)(2) (providing for similar 21-day response time for summary-judgment motions).*FN1

An extension of time may be granted after a showing of good cause, including an extension of time to respond to a motion.  See Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(b)(1), 16(b)(4); NECivR 6.1(a)(2); 7.1(h).  Further, “‘[g]ood cause is usually not difficult to show and ‘an application for enlargement of time under Rule 6(b)(1) normally will be granted in the absence of bad faith on the part of the party seeking relief or prejudice to the adverse party.”  Rankin v. City of Niagara Falls, 293 F.R.D. 375, 390 (W.D.N.Y. 2013).  In Rankin, the extension was denied because the plaintiff’s attorney acted in bad faith.   

In Backus v. Mena Newspapers, Inc., 224 F. Supp. 2d 1228 (D. Ark. 2002), the plaintiff was five days late in responding to a motion for summary judgment and the delay was due, in part, to the defendants’ failing to comply with Rule 26(a) and the plaintiff’s discovery requests.  The defendants also redacted large portions of the exhibits they offered in support of the summary judgment motion.  Id. at 1230.  Nevertheless, the defendants asserted that because the response was late, the motion should be deemed unopposed.  The court disagreed.  It concluded that […]

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