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Last Modified 09/21/2004 01:01 PM
Joan A. Lenard
U.S. District Judge

The following information has been secured by voluntary questionnaire from the judiciary. This information is not binding on any judge or court official and may not be relied upon for precedential purposes.

Location of Chambers: 301 North Miami Avenue, 7th Floor, Miami, FL 33128
Phone Number: (305) 523-5500
Assigned Courtroom: Courtroom 7

    Scheduling Assistant/Secretary: Diana Pizarro
    Phone Number: (305) 523-5500

    Courtroom Deputy: Lisa Shelnut
    Phone Number: (305) 523-5506

    Court Reporter: Richard Kaufman
    Phone Number: (305) 523-5499

    Docket Clerk: Rehan Ahmad
    Phone Number: (305) 523-5241

      Law Clerks:

        (1) Lisa Lynch
        Term Ending: 9/05
        Law School: NYU School of Law

        (2) Katharine Larsen
        Term Ending: Starting 9/04 Ending 9/06
        Law School: Georgetown University Law Center

    Policy regarding communication with staff [i.e., Do you permit counsel to contact assigned law clerks?]:
    None permitted

    A. Preliminary Pretrial Hearings:

      Do you conduct preliminary pretrial hearings?
      Yes___No_X_ Not at this time

      If YES, what matters do you typically discuss during preliminary pretrial hearings:
      (Note: Parties must comply with Rule 16.1, Fed.R.Civ.P.)

      If NO, do you refer preliminary pretrial hearings to a United States Magistrate Judge?

    B. Motion Practice:

      Do you regularly set aside time during a given week/month for hearings on motions?
      Yes_X_No___ As needed

      If YES, when is your normal hearing date/time?

      What are your procedures concerning ex-parte temporary restraining orders?
      All motions should be filed in the clerk's office pursuant to S.D.Fla.L.R. 5.1(B), (D) – (1 original & 1 copy for Judge) – Chambers will then notify the movant once the motion has been reviewed and disposition made.

      Do you hear preliminary injunction motions yourself?

      If NO, do you routinely refer preliminary injunctions for report and recommendation by a U.S. Magistrate Judge?
      Yes_X_No___ Sometimes

      If YES, do you limit the hearing to argument of counsel?

      If NO, what are your procedures for the receipt of evidence during a hearing on a preliminary injunction?
      Rules of Evidence.

      What is your practice concerning oral arguments of dispositive motions?
      Oral argument if appropriate.

    C. Settlement:

      What is your policy/practice regarding the use of alternative dispute resolution devices such as court-annexed, non-binding arbitration and mediation
      Mediation is mandatory. If a settlement ensues, parties shall immediately notify the Court.

      Do you personally conduct settlement discussions?
      Yes_X_No___ Sometimes

      If YES, under that circumstances?

    D. Discovery:

      Do you refer discovery matters to a U.S. Magistrate Judge?

    E. Pretrial Conference:

      Do you personally conduct pretrial conferences in your cases?

      If YES, do you have a standing order regarding pretrial conference?
      Yes_X_No___ (If YES, please attach a copy.)
    A. Preliminary Pretrial Hearings:

      Do you personally conduct preliminary pretrial conferences in criminal cases?
      Yes_X_No___( in some cases)

      If YES, what matters do you typically discuss during a preliminary pretrial conference?
      The scheduling of trial, disclosure of discovery and the parameters for the filing of motions and responses are all considered by the Court.

      If NO, do you refer preliminary pretrial conferences to U.S. Magistrate Judges?

      Do you have a policy regarding the timing of disclosure of Jencks Act material?

      If YES, what is your policy?

    B. Pleas:

      What is your policy concerning nolo contendere or Alford?

      What is your policy concerning plea arrangements that involve sentencing recommendations?
      All matters are handled on a case-by-case basis.
    A. Trial dates:

      Do you grant trial dates certain?
      Yes_X_No___ (if appropriate)

      If YES, under what circumstances will you grant trial date certain?
      Special set determinations are based upon the complexity of cases and availability of witnesses and docket considerations.

      If a case is not reached during the scheduled trial term, will the trial date be automatically rescheduled on your next trial docket?
      Yes_X_No___(civil-next available)

      If NO, what is your practice or procedure regarding rescheduling trials which are not reached on a trial docket?

      What is your policy regarding notice of being called for trial during a trial docket? [e.g., 48 hours]
      All cases are assigned numbers at calendar call. Once a trial ends, the next case (in numerical sequence) begins trial the following day.

    B. Trial Briefs.

      Do you require trial briefs in jury trials?

      Do you require trial briefs in bench trials?

      What are your requirements for trial briefs?

      When are trial briefs due?

      Do you require proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law to be filed in bench trials?

      If YES, when do you require the proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law to be filed?
      Parties shall submit them when trial commences. They may be amended or supplemented, if necessary, at the conclusion of trial. (NOTE: A diskette with the findings of fact and conclusions of law in WordPerfect should also be submitted.)

      When do you require parties to file proposed jury instructions?
      Jury instructions shall be submitted three (3) days before the first day of trial. They may be amended or supplemented, if necessary, at the conclusion of trial. (NOTE: A diskette with the proposed instructions in WordPerfect should also be submitted.)

    C. Voir Dire:

      Do you permit counsel to conduct voir dire?

      If YES, what guidelines or restrictions must counsel follow when conducting voir dire?

      If judge conducts voir dire, can parties submit proposed voir dire questions?

      If YES, when should such questions be submitted?
      Proposed voir dire questions should be submitted three (3) days before commencement of trial.

      What are your preemptory challenge procedures?
      Court questions all jurors utilizing Court questionnaire and any additional Court approved questions requested by counsel. Court subsequently asks counsel at side bar if any additional inquiry is requested. Counsel then moves for excusals based upon cause. Counsel then exercise their peremptory challenges juror by juror in the following manner: jurors are each assigned a number and Government/Plaintiff exercises its peremptory challenges on each odd numbered juror first and Defendant exercises its peremptory challenges first on each even numbered juror. (Ex. Juror #1: To Government/Plaintiff for exercise of peremptory; if none, to Defendant. Juror #2: To Defendant for peremptory if none, to Government/Plaintiff etc.; until the jury is chosen.

      In multiple party cases, do you grant each party three preemptory challenges?
      Yes_X_No___ Sometimes

      If NO, do you limit each side [i.e., plaintiff/defense] a total of three preemptory challenges to be shared?

    D. Opening Statement:

      Do you have any standard time limits imposed upon counsel?

      If YES, what are the time limits?

      Can exhibits be used in opening statements?
      Yes_X_No___ If stipulated

    E. Use of Expert:

      Do you conduct Daubert hearings prior to trial?

    F. Procedure For Use Of Videotapes, Trial Graphics, Depositions and Demonstrations.

      Computer presentation system, VCR and ELMO, including cassette and computer hook-ups are available for use during trial. Counsel, witness and jurors all have flat screens.

    G. Procedure For Objections:

      When voicing objections, counsel should stand and state his/her grounds succinctly. (No speaking objections.)

    H. Jury Procedures:

      Do you permit jurors to take notes?

      Do you permit jurors to ask questions either orally (writing)?

      If YES, under what constraints and restrictions?
      Do you allow the submission of sentencing memoranda?

      If YES, under what circumstances do you allow such submission?
      Court considers the pleadings filed by parties.

      1. Objections: Argument & Evidentiary Hearing
      2. Adoption of Presentence Investigation Report by Court
      3. Motions for upward/downward departure
      4. Allocution (including statements by Defendant, victim, family, if any)
      5. Imposition of Sentence

      Do you divulge the probation officer's sentencing recommendation?
      What are your “pet peeves,” for the information of the lawyers appearing before you?

      What, if any, other observations or suggestions do you have for members of the Bar appearing before you?

Attachment 1.pdf Biographical Information

Attachment 2.pdfOrder Setting Pretrial Conference and Trial, Establishing Pretrial and Trial Procedures and Establishing Pretrial Deadlines

© The Florida Bar - 2005 - Version 1.0.2