The Resolve Law LA Virtual MSC Program provides free 3-hour volunteer staffed virtual MSCs for cases in the Superior Court of Los Angeles County's PI Hub and for certain IC Court employment cases amenable to early resolution. To be eligible, cases must have been ordered into the program by a judge in the PI Hub of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County or by an IC Court judge pursuant to the applicable Standing Order issued by the Court.
The Early Resolution Employment Case Mandatory Settlement Conference Pilot Program (Pilot Program) encourages resolution of employment cases assigned to five Independent Calendar (IC) courtrooms in the Court's Central Civil Division at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse. The Pilot Program will operate from the courtrooms of Judge Monica Bachner (Dept. 71), Judge Kristin S. Escalante (Dept. 24), Judge Laura A. Seigle (Dept. 48), Judge David Sotelo (Dept. 40) and Judge Theresa M. Traber (Dept. 47). These judges will focus on cases most likely to benefit from early intervention, including single plaintiff employment actions alleging wrongful termination, harassment, and/or discrimination, single-plaintiff wage- and hour-claims and non-class Private Attorneys General Act actions involving small numbers of aggrieved employees. Virtual MSCs associated with the program are anticipated to begin in March. Though eligibility for the Pilot Program will be first limited to identified cases in these select IC courtrooms, the Court hopes to expand the Pilot Program to more courtrooms in the future.
The Pilot Program will give preference to cases involving small businesses, short-term employees, failure-to-hire situations, readily quantifiable damages or other cases likely to require less discovery or are otherwise suitable for early dispute resolution. The Pilot Program will supplement existing resolution processes by targeting cases where the court determines, after consulting with the parties, a successful MSC can be held within six to nine months of filing and before extensive discovery has taken place.
Attorney members of ASCDC, BHBA, CAALA, CELA, LA-ABOTA and LACBA Labor & Employment Section with at least 10 years litigation experience serve as the program's volunteer Settlement Officers. Each MSC will be staffed by one Plaintiff Settlement Officer and one Defense Settlement Officer. The Settlement Officers perform conflict checks for the cases to which they are assigned and must confirm that they have no conflicts before proceeding on the case.
Virtual MSCs are held via Zoom, are 3-hours long, and are conducted at 9:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on Monday-Friday each week. Virtual MSCs will not be held on court holidays.
How Can I Register to Be a Volunteer Settlement Officer?
How Does a Case Get Ordered into the Virtual MSC Program?
The Resolve Law LA Virtual MSC Program is available for cases ordered into the program by a PI Hub judge or, for employment cases, by a participating Pilot Program judge. This is a Court ordered MSC and all appropriate decision makers must attend the Virtual MSC.
How Does a Case Get Scheduled for the Virtual MSC?
Cases are only eligible for the Virtual MSC Program if they have been ordered into the program. If you are counsel for Plaintiff in a case ordered to an MSC and want to schedule the MSC, you must first create an account for yourself. To create an account as Plaintiff's counsel, click here.
Once Plaintiff's counsel has created an account, counsel will need to Register a Case before scheduling the MSC. Case registration occurs through Plaintiff's counsel's Dashboard and requires Plaintiff's counsel to input defense counsel's name, address, email address, phone number and State Bar number.
Plaintiff's counsel will not be able to select the Settlement Officers to be assigned to the case as the system assigns Settlement Officers based on the Settlement Officers' availability.
Once a case has been registered, Plaintiff's counsel will select a date and time for the MSC after having confirmed that all parties, their counsel, and all decision makers who must appear at the Virtual MSC are available for the date and time being selected. Plaintiff's counsel is prohibited by the Superior Court of Los Angeles County applicable Standing Order from scheduling the MSC without first obtaining written confirmation of defense counsel's and Defendant's availability for the date and time being scheduled.
Plaintiff's counsel may cancel any scheduled MSC through their Dashboard. If an MSC is canceled for any reason, the Resolve Law LA system will notify the Settlement Officers assigned to the case and defense counsel.
Plaintiff and defense counsel can upload MSC briefs which are due no later than five (5) court days before the MSC. Briefs are limited to 5 pages and 10 pages of exhibits. The Settlement Officer has discretion to disregard any documents submitted which exceed these limits.
The uploaded MSC briefs are electronically delivered to the Settlement Officers assigned to the case. The MSC briefs are not delivered or made available to the opposing party. Should counsel wish opposing counsel to have their MSC brief, they must serve the MSC Brief on opposing counsel. MSC briefs remain available to the attorney who uploaded the brief through that attorney's Dashboard.
Once a case has been scheduled for an MSC, the Resolve Law LA system will automatically send confirmation emails with the date and time of the MSC, brief upload instructions, and connection instructions for the virtual MSC to Plaintiff's and Defendant's counsel. The system will also email or text parties with connection instructions and a Zoom link if counsel for the party has input the party's contact information into the system. It is the responsibility of each counsel to ensure that their client attends the scheduled MSC. There is an instructional video from Los Angeles County Superior Court that each party must watch at the beginning of each MSC.
The Superior Court of Los Angeles County will have a judge available to assist the parties should such assistance become necessary. The Settlement Officers in your case will be able to contact the Superior Court of Los Angeles County and request a judge to join the proceedings as needed.
A fillable form Settlement Agreement is available for download. The Resolve Law LA System does not provide for electronic execution of settlement related documents. Counsel for the parties should download the fillable Settlement Agreement, input all appropriate terms into the form, and obtain execution by their clients via email, fax, or electronic signature, per the preferences and services used by each attorney.
A form Stipulation for Retention of Jurisdiction per C.C.P. Section 664.6 and [Proposed] Order and Request for Dismissal forms are also provided should counsel need them.