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Civil Litigation - Private
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average rating is 5 out of 5
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I like to write reviews that actually help lawyers when dealing with a judge, not as something designed to bad-mouth a judge. Judge Olguin is not a bad person. He’s relatively pleasant in court. He’s a little moody at times, but nothing to worry about. He’s also very good at applying the law. I have found him to be very good in applying the law when I have filed or opposed motions. Substantively, he’s a great judge. However, he does have his problems. One is his lack of punctuality in getting your case to trial on time. I don’t know if he does it intentionally, or if he is just backed up with his calendar, but he constantly delays your trial date. My gut instinct is that he intentionally delays cases, as a means of attrition, to try to get the parties to settle. Again, I don’t have actual proof of this, but it is the impression I was left with when he delayed one of my cases for over a year. He also is unconscionably anal about following his chamber rules. His obsession with his rules makes it seem like he’s autistic, even though he’s not. I don’t mean this as an insult, rather, it just helps explain his incredible dedication to esoteric rules that really don’t matter. If you violate the most minor of his 3,712 rules, he’ll make you pay. He doesn’t do this in a mean-spirited or vindictive way, rather, he just sees it as necessary. He’s a good judge who is too wrapped up in following every rule in the universe. He also makes your case very expensive to prosecute. Let me give you two examples. First, he has a rule that requires both counsel to have a pre-trial discussion about motions in limine, jury instructions, etc. Normally, that is fully to be expected, and perfectly normal. However, Judge Olguin requires you to have a court reporter present when you conduct this conference. To make matters worse, if your case is delayed, he will make you repeatedly redo this conference, always with a court reporter present for the next conference. Second, on one case, opposing counsel and I had some disputes during the case. Thereafter, Judge Olguin ordered us to meet and confer in-person every single time we had a dispute, with a court reporter present. A quick way to cause costs to skyrocket. I find it ironic that federal courts always claim to be worried that the parties expending too much money prosecuting cases, then they turn around and require you to have court reporters present when you are going to the bathroom. Utterly petty. In the end, if you have Judge Olguin, you need to expect your case to take at least two years, probably more, to get to trial. He’ll be fair if he ever has to make substantive rulings, but that is IF you can ever get to the point of needing substantive rulings.
7/15/19, 2:16 AM
Hon. Fernando M. Olguin

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