Deane v. Navy Federal Credit Union
A court possesses the discretion to dismiss a complaint, for failure to prosecute, if the plaintiff fails to attend a settlement conference. Allegedly, the defendant's representative spent $569 to travel from Virginia, to attend a settlement conference in Connecticut, and the plaintiff failed to attend. The defendant requested compensation for the travel expenses and submitted invoices related to the travel. The defendant also requested attorneys' fees of $195 per hour, to prepare for and to attend the settlement conference. The District Court possesses the power to order sanctions, if a party or its attorney "fails to appear at a scheduling or other pretrial conference" and "fails to obey a scheduling or other pretrial order," pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 16(f)(1)(A). The court found the defendant's request for compensation appropriate. The court dismissed the plaintiff's complaint, for failure to prosecute, with leave to open after the plaintiff pays $2,956 toward the defendant's travel expenses and attorneys' fees.