Chief Judge Matthew W. Brann | Middle District of Pennsylvania (2022)

Oral arguments and evidentiary hearings.
Judge Brann does not routinely hear oral argument on motions, but will consider it on request of counsel or if he believes it will assist him in deciding the motion. Judge Brann does not set aside specific days or times for oral arguments or evidentiary hearings. Arguments and hearings are scheduled on an ad hoc basis. Counsel should make a formal request for the same by way of a motion filed in accordance with the local rules.

Standard form of scheduling order and the extent to which scheduling orders are changed to accommodate particular cases.
Judge Brann employs several standard orders, copies of which appear at the end of this list of preferences. He makes accommodations when they are justified.

Federal Rule 26 and M.D. Pa. Local Rule 26.1.
Judge Brann generally follows Fed. R. Civ. P. 26 and L.R. 26.1 et. seq. as to mandatory disclosure requirements but discourages discovery prior to the Rule 16 conference.

The extent to which counsel may influence the length of the discovery period, extensions, trial dates, etc.
Judge Brann considers such requests on a case-by-case basis.

The average amount of time allowed for discovery in a standard track case and the extent to which the standard amount of time is varied.
Judge Brann permits eight months in a standard track case. He permits extensions of time to complete discovery when they are justified.

Preferred approach and procedures for handling discovery conferences and disputes.
Judge Brann requires counsel to alert the Court by letter filed on the docket as to any discovery dispute prior to filing a formal motion. A telephonic conference call will then be scheduled by the Court in an attempt to resolve the discovery dispute informally. If this proves unsuccessful, the parties will be directed to file a formal motion, with an anticipated formal response. In many cases, Judge Brann will refer discovery disputes to magistrate judges.

Handling of confidentiality agreements.
Judge Brann handles confidentiality agreements according to the dictates of the Third Circuit decisions and any other applicable law. See Pansy v. Borough of Stroudsburg, 23 F. 3d 772 (3d Cir. 1994).

Approach to requests for additional pages in excess of the page limitation set forth in Local Rule 7.8.
Judge Brann considers such requests on a case-by-case basis.

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Particular guidance regarding pretrial memoranda.
Judge Brann considers pretrial memoranda essential. He requests that they be filed one week in advance of the pretrial conference to permit his review of them, as noted in the initial case management order.

Use of different pretrial memorandum format than that included with the Middle District Local Rules.
Judge Brann does not use a different format than is included in the local rules.

Procedure for scheduling trials.
At the initial case management conference, Judge Brann schedules trials in advance for a given month. He advises that trials may be moved within a given month and that criminal matters are given priority. Judge Brann will advise counsel as soon as possible when each case will be called for trial. He will regularly give a date certain for trial. On trial days, the Court will start at 9:30 a.m. and may sit until 5:00 p.m. or later.

How needs of out-of-town parties, attorneys, or witnesses are accommodated.
Judge Brann makes accommodations by allowing telephone conferences in some cases and scheduling in-person conferences so as to allow time for travel. Judge Brann also considers these factors when setting the trial date, typically at the time of the pre-trial conference.

Prefer expert witnesses scheduled to testify to provide written reports.
Judge Brann prefers that any such reports be submitted to the Court by counsel as part of their pretrial memoranda. Failure to do so will bar the use of the expert’s testimony at trial.

Trial briefs submitted by counsel.
Judge Brann generally does not require trial briefs.

Counsel participation in voir dire.
Judge Brann will conduct voir dire, but directs written submissions of proposed questions from counsel.

Time limits, if any, for opening and closing statements at trial.
Judge Brann generally does not impose time limitations for opening and closing statements.

Preference regarding whether counsel examine witnesses from counsel table or elsewhere, including whether counsel should remain seated while examining witnesses.
Judge Brann has no preference.

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Whether more than one attorney may handle trial for a party.
Judge Brann allows more than one attorney to handle trial for a party. He will not permit more than one attorney for a party to examine the same witness.

Particular practices for handling sidebar conferences.
Judge Brann has no particular practices aside from discouraging repetitive and unnecessary sidebar conferences.

Special requirements for introducing videotaped testimony.
Judge Brann requires counsel to view all videotaped depositions for the purpose of editing the videotape and resolving material objections before offering the videotape as evidence. When videotaped testimony is presented, Judge Brann requires a printed transcript for submission to the record.

Pre-marking of documentary and photographic exhibits.
Judge Brann requires that all exhibits be pre-marked and exchanged with opposing counsel prior to the commencement of trial.

Preferred procedure for the moving of exhibits into evidence at trial.
Judge Brann requires that exhibits be moved into evidence at the conclusion of the examination of the witness.

Examination of witnesses beyond redirect and recross.
Judge Brann does not permit examination of witnesses beyond redirect and recross, unless the need is clear.

Special requirements for reading of depositions or other materials into the record at trial.
Judge Brann has no particular requirements.

Requirement of a written motion and/or brief for judgment as a matter of law or judgment on the pleadings when such motion is made during trial.
Judge Brann adopts the stance of his colleague, Judge William W. Caldwell, who does not require a written motion but suggests that it is “just good practice to file a written motion (no brief) as follow-up.”

Practice for the receipt of proposed jury instructions.
Judge Brann requires that proposed jury instructions be submitted one week prior to the time of the pretrial conference. He generally adheres to the number of jury instructions permitted by the local rules, with exceptions made, as deemed appropriate.

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Note-taking by jurors.
Judge Brann allows note-taking by jurors.

Whether the jury may take exhibits into the jury room.
Judge Brann generally allows exhibits to be taken to the jury room, with the exception of expert reports or medical records, and subject to agreement or objection by counsel.

Written verdict forms.
Judge Brann routinely submits verdict forms. He requires counsel to submit proposed verdict forms and then prepares the final verdict form that is to be answered by the jury.

Written jury instructions provided to the jury.
Judge Brann will provide a written copy of the charge to each juror immediately before charging the jury.

Requirements as to counsel’s whereabouts.
Judge Brann requires counsel to be on standby at all times, within ten minutes of the assigned courtroom.

Whether counsel may speak with the jurors after a verdict.
Judge Brann permits counsel to speak with the jury post-verdict, although the jurors are told that they are under no obligation to speak with counsel. If there is a request to poll the jury, the courtroom deputy conducts any polls. Judge Brann will not permit polling after he has instructed his courtroom deputy to enter judgment on the verdict.

Jury requests for review of testimony or recorded evidence.
Judge Brann may grant such requests depending upon the circumstances.

Handling request for temporary restraining orders.
Judge Brann has no particular practice for requests for emergency relief, except that counsel seeking ex parte relief must be prepared to state what efforts were made to notify the opposing party or counsel of the intention to seek emergency relief.

As to injunctions, whether expedited discovery.
Judge Brann attends to all matters related to injunctions on a case-by-case basis.

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General approach to mediation matters.
Judge Brann facilitates mediation when the parties indicate a willingness to mediate. When conducting mediation, he will request confidential settlement memoranda from the parties.

General approach to settlement and non-jury cases.
Judge Brann strongly encourages settlement and directs counsel to the Middle District’s mediators. He believes that the Court’s involvement in settlement conferences is generally helpful and will become involved in settlement of jury cases. Judge Brann will refer cases to magistrate judges and outside negotiators as determined by requests of the parties.

Variance in practice and procedures between criminal cases and civil cases.
Judge Brann does not vary his practice between criminal and civil cases.

Particular procedures as to magistrate judge reports.

Approach to media communications.
Since federal judges provide reasons for the decisions rendered, there is generally no need to have media communication.

Particular approach or practices regarding pro se matters.

Particular approach or practices regarding default proceedings.

Other preferences:
It seems to me that a federal district judge should be the least memorable person in the courtroom. To that end, I believe that lawyers should be permitted to try their cases, bounded by a working knowledge of the applicable civil or criminal rules, the Federal Rules of Evidence and civility, both to the court and to one another.


Where is Judge Brann? ›

Brann | Middle District of Pennsylvania | United States District Court.

Who are the federal judges in Pennsylvania? ›

District Court Judges
  • Juan R. Sánchez, Chief Judge.
  • Gene E.K. Pratter.
  • Paul S. Diamond.
  • Mitchell S. Goldberg.
  • Nitza I. Quiñones Alejandro.
  • Jeffrey L. Schmehl.
  • Gerald A. McHugh.
  • Edward G. Smith.

What federal district court is PA in? ›

United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
(M.D. Pa.)
LocationRonald Reagan Federal Building and Courthouse (Harrisburg) More locations William J. Nealon Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse (Scranton) Williamsport Wilkes-Barre Lewisburg
Appeals toThird Circuit
EstablishedMarch 2, 1901
8 more rows

Where is the Middle District of Pennsylvania? ›

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania serves 33 counties from offices in Scranton, Harrisburg, Williamsport, and Wilkes-Barre.

Who appointed Matthew Brann district judge? ›

Confirmed 218 days after nomination. On May 17, 2012, President Barack Obama nominated Brann to a seat on the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania vacated by Thomas Vanaskie.

Who appointed Judge Matthew Brann? ›

Barack Obama

How much does a Pennsylvania district judge make? ›

The annual salary of a magisterial district judge shall be $98,565.

Who is the current Chief Justice in Pennsylvania? ›

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is the state's court of last resort and has seven judgeships. The current chief of the court is Debra Todd. The court was established by the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly in 1722 as a successor to the Provincial Court established in 1684.

How many federal district courts are in PA? ›

The federal district courts are the trial courts in the federal court system. Pennsylvania has three federal district courts, which are the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Middle, and Western Districts of Pennsylvania.

What is the highest court in PA? ›

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is the highest court in the Commonwealth and the oldest appellate court in the nation.

How many judicial districts are there in PA? ›

overview. The Courts of Common Pleas are the general trial courts of Pennsylvania. They are organized into 60 judicial districts.

What is a district judge in PA? ›

They act as commissioners to preside over arraignments, fix and accept bail, issue warrants, and hold preliminary hearings, as well as acting as a committing judge in all criminal proceedings.

What cities are in the Middle District of Pennsylvania? ›

Court Locations
  • Scranton.
  • Harrisburg.
  • Williamsport.
  • Wilkes-Barre.

How do I get admitted to the Middle District of Pennsylvania? ›

Attorneys seeking General Admission must be a member of the Pennsylvania State Bar and their sponsor must be admitted to practice in the Middle District of Pennsylvania. General Admission requires the attorney and their sponsor to appear before a district judge to take an oath.

What are the 7 regions of Pennsylvania? ›

  • Lehigh Valley.
  • Southeastern Pennsylvania.
  • Northeastern Pennsylvania.
  • Central Pennsylvania.
  • Western Pennsylvania.
  • References.
  • External links.

How many bodyguards does district judge have? ›

District Judges are normally provided with 2 to 4 arms guards as security cover in their separate jurisdictions, and CJMs are also provided with 1–2 arms guards, while the rest of the Judges are provided with 1 arms guard if necessary.

Who is the highest judge in district court? ›

The highest court in each district is that of the District and Sessions Judge.

Who is the youngest district judge? ›

Meet Mayank Pratap Singh, the youngest judge of India who has created history by cracking the Rajasthan Judiciary Services Examination at the age of 21.

Who has appointed the most judges? ›

To date, Ronald Reagan has appointed the largest number of federal judges, with 383, followed closely by Bill Clinton with 378. William Henry Harrison, who died 31 days after his inauguration, is the only president to have appointed no federal judges.

How many judges did Donald Trump appoint? ›

The total number of Trump Article III judgeship nominees to be confirmed by the United States Senate was 234, including three associate justices of the Supreme Court of the United States, 54 judges for the United States courts of appeals, 174 judges for the United States district courts, and three judges for the United ...

Who impeached judges? ›

Only Congress has the authority to remove an Article III judge. This is done through a vote of impeachment by the House and a trial and conviction by the Senate. As of September 2017, only 15 federal judges have been impeached, and only eight have been convicted.

Who is the highest paid judge in the United States? ›

Associate justices on the Supreme Court make $255,300, while the Chief Justice, currently John Roberts, makes $267,000. These salaries usually increase by $2,000-$3,000 each year. A seat on the court comes with some desirable benefits.

What is the highest judge salary? ›

Judicial Compensation
YearDistrict JudgesChief Justice
51 more rows

What state has the highest paid judge? ›

New Mexico is the best state, and Farmington is the city with the highest pay for judges.
24. District of Columbia.
Total Judge Jobs:12
Highest 10 Percent Earn:$170,000
3 more rows
6 Apr 2021

How much does a magisterial district judge make in PA? ›

The annual salary of a magisterial district judge shall be $93,338.

How much do magistrate judges make in PA? ›

How much does a Judge/Magistrate make in Pennsylvania? The average Judge/Magistrate salary in Pennsylvania is $173,865 as of September 26, 2022, but the range typically falls between $170,543 and $194,574.

Who is the Chief Justice now 2022? ›

The Supreme Court as composed June 30, 2022 to present.

Front row, left to right: Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr., and Associate Justice Elena Kagan.

Which state has the largest court system? ›

California's court system is the largest in the nation and serves a population of more than 39 million people—about 12 percent of the total U.S. population. The vast majority of cases in the California courts begin in one of the 58 superior, or trial, courts, which reside in each of the state's 58 counties.

Who is the current chief justice? ›

John G. Roberts, Jr., Chief Justice of the United States,

was born in Buffalo, New York, January 27, 1955. He married Jane Marie Sullivan in 1996 and they have two children - Josephine and Jack.

What are the three levels of the Pennsylvania court system are? ›

There are three basic levels to the Pennsylvania Court System: minor courts, Courts of Common Pleas, and statewide intermediate appellate courts, which are called the Commonwealth Court and the Superior Court.

What are the top 3 state courts in PA? ›

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is the state supreme court and court of last resort. The intermediate appellate courts in Pennsylvania are the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania (for matters involving state agencies) and the Superior Court of Pennsylvania (for all other appeals).

What is the most powerful court in the United States? ›

The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the land and the only part of the federal judiciary specifically required by the Constitution. The Constitution does not stipulate the number of Supreme Court Justices; the number is set instead by Congress.

What is the largest court in all the land? ›

The Supreme Court is the highest court in the United States. Article III of the U.S. Constitution created the Supreme Court and authorized Congress to pass laws establishing a system of lower courts.

What is unique about the PA courts? ›

There are 7 Supreme Court justices. The Supreme Court is based in Harrisburg, but also hears cases in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is the oldest court in the United States and has been hearing cases since 1722, 67 years before the United States Supreme Court was established.

What does a district magistrate do in PA? ›

Magisterial District Court is the first level of judicial authority in Pennsylvania and is the court where most people experience the judicial system for the first time. Magisterial District Judges handle all traffic cases, minor criminal cases, and civil cases involving amounts up to $12,000.

Where is the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania? ›

First Judicial District of Pennsylvania | Homepage | City of Philadelphia.

How do you address a district Judge? ›

Call them 'Sir' or 'Madam' in court, or 'Judge'.

What powers do district judges have? ›

District Judges (Magistrates' court) hear criminal cases, youth cases and also some civil proceedings in Magistrates' courts. They can be authorised to hear cases in the Family Court. Some are authorised to deal with extradition proceedings and terrorist cases. They are also authorised to sit as prison adjudicators.

Is a circuit Judge higher than a district Judge? ›

Circuit judges rank below High Court judges but above district judges. They may be appointed to sit as deputy High Court judges, and some of the more senior circuit judges are eligible to sit in the Criminal Division of the Court of Appeal.

› wiki › Judiciary_of_Pennsylvania ›

Judiciary of Pennsylvania › wiki › Judiciary_of_Pennsylvania › wiki › Judiciary_of_Pennsylvania
The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania is the unified state court system of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Contents. 1 Courts. 1.1 Supreme Court; 1.2 Co...

Courts in Pennsylvania › Courts_in_Pennsylvania › Courts_in_Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, there are three federal district courts, state supreme court, a superior court, a commonwealth court, and trial courts with both general and li...

Courts › courts › courts
Pennsylvania's Unified Judicial System is one of North America's oldest, growing from a collection of part-time, local courts prior to 1700 to today&#39...

Is Judge Brinkley still on the bench? ›

Brinkley has been a judge since 1993.

She graduated from Spelman College in 1978 and received her law degree from Temple University. Ballotpedia states that Brinkley ran for retention in 2013 and her term will expire in 2023.

Who is Matt Brann? ›

He began his career with ABC Rural in 2007 and has spent the past decade talking beef, melons, pearls and mangoes across northern Australia. Matt is the host of the Northern Territory Country Hour. His mission to become part of the 'metre barra club' still eludes him.

How many judges have been removed from the bench? ›

Historical impeachment of judges. Fifteen federal judges have been impeached. Of those fifteen: eight were convicted by the Senate, four were acquitted by the Senate, and three resigned before an outcome at trial.

What does it mean when a judge is benched? ›

Bench refers to the seat where the judge sits in the courtroom, and the term is used to refer to the judge. It can be used to describe all the judges of a particular court, such as the second circuit bench, or “full bench”, which refers to all the judges of a court.

How many judges make a full bench? ›

Usually a full bench of the High Court consists of three judges while a full bench of the Supreme Court of Appeal consists of five judges.

Who is Avrils drummer? ›

Matt Brann (born 14 November 1980) is a Canadian drummer, mainly known for his work with Avril Lavigne.

Who is playing drums on Avril Lavigne? ›

Matt Brann (born 14 November 1980) is a Canadian drummer, mainly known for his work with Avril Lavigne.


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