An American Federal Court judge has showed his softer side in a dispute involving a newborn baby, two opposing legal teams and a couple of apparently heartless plaintiff lawyers.
Lawhaha.com reports that in a Kansas federal district court, the defendants’ lawyer asked for a trial continuance because it happened to clash with the date on which he was due to become a father for the very first time.
The plaintiffs’ lawyers, however, opposed the continuance – something which “surprised” the judge. Obviously quite annoyed at the opposition, Judge Eric Melgren not only granted the motion for continuance, but had a piece to say to the objecting lawyers.
“Given the proposed length of trial and the famous disregard that newborns (especially first-borns) have for such schedules, and given that the trial is scheduled in Kansas City while the new [baby’s] arrival is scheduled in Dallas, Defendants move this Court for a continuance,” read the judge.
“This in itself would not be remarkable, but in reviewing the motion the Court was more than somewhat surprised to read that ‘Plaintiffs have refused to agree to continue the trial setting and have indicated that they intend to oppose this Motion …
“First, Plaintiffs make a lengthy and spirited argument about when Defendants should have known this would happen, even citing a pretrial conference occurring in early November as a time when [Plantiffs’ lawyer] ‘most certainly’ would have known of the due date of his child, and even more astonishingly arguing that ‘utilizing simple math, the due date for [the] child’s birth would have been known on approximately Oct. 3, or shortly thereafter’.
“For reasons of good taste which should be (though, apparently, are not) too obvious to explain, the Court declines to accept Plaintiffs’ invitation to speculate on the time of conception of the … child …
“Finally, Plaintiffs argue that surely [Plaintiffs’ lawyer] will have sufficient time to make it from the Kansas City trial to the Dallas birth, even helpfully pointing out the number of daily, non-stop flights between the two cities; and in any event complain of the inconvenience of this late requested continuance.
“Certainly this judge is convinced of the importance of federal court, but he has always tried not to confuse what he does with who he is, nor to distort the priorities of his day job with his life’s role. Counsel are encouraged to order their priorities similarly. Defendants’ Motion is GRANTED. The Ermans are CONGRATULATED. IT IS SO ORDERED.”
Take that, baby haters!