Why Do I Have to Hire Yet One More Person to Help Me Resolve My Dispute?
I know you’ve hired lawyers, hired experts, paid taxes to support the civil justice system and you’ve got to be wondering how hiring someone called a Special Master is going to be good for you.
In a perfect world, yours would be the only case that needs to be decided this week. In a perfect world, there would be no one charged with crimes constitutionally guaranteed a speedy trial. In a perfect world, no one would get divorced, and children of divorcing parents wouldn’t need to be protected.
Most clients are surprised to discover that the vast majority of judicial resources are tied up in handling criminal and family law cases. It’s sad, but true. Sometimes there are just too many civil cases and not enough civil judges to get to them all in a timely manner. In this less-than-perfect world, if you want to get your dispute resolved as quickly and fairly as possible, you have the opportunity to supplement the Court’s ability to allocate time to your case by engaging a Special Master.
So, the judge assigned to your case - and your attorney - have decided that it’s in your best interest to use the services of a Special Master.
If they have selected me to serve as your Special Master in a civil case, I will assist the Court by handling pre-trial and discovery matters and forwarding my Report and Recommendations for final review and decision by the judge.
If I have been appointed Special Master in a patent case, I will be reviewing documents, hearing testimony and arguments by the lawyers, and making a Report and Recommendation to the Court about how I think the contested claims would best be construed and presented to a jury. The ultimate decision-maker is still, of course, the judge.
You can think of me as an assistant judge - who has all the time that your case needs - and treat like a judge because, in essence, that’s the function I’m performing for you for the Court.
You can think of my assistant, Ms. Chaky, as a District Clerk and a judge’s secretary, with a little bit of judge’s law clerk thrown in for good measure. She’s going to be your primary point of contact. If you have questions that aren’t answered here in the FAQ section or by reading through other materials in this section of the site, she’s available to help you get answers by email or phone.