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Court Error – Abuse of Discretion

7th Circuit Court of Appeals

Case Name: Lawrence Krivak v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc.,

Case No.: 20-1276

Officials: SYKES, Chief Judge, and EASTERBROOK and SCUDDER, Circuit Judges.

Focus: Court Error – Abuse of Discretion

After Lawrence Krivak fell and injured himself in a Home Depot parking lot, he sued the store but failed time and again to prosecute his case. Krivak’s counsel missed many court conferences and seemed to pay little attention to court rules and case deadlines. Along the way, counsel’s delinquency drew a scolding and sanction from the magistrate judge and, in time, led to the district court giving one clear and final warning—miss no more conferences or face dismissal of your case. When Krivak’s counsel no-showed another time, the district court stuck to its word and dismissed the case. Krivak twice sought relief from the judgment, but here too his counsel continued to miss deadlines, thus limiting the scope of what we can review on appeal. The only challenge properly before us is to the district court’s refusal to reopen the case, and because we see no abuse of discretion, we affirm that judgment.


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Derek A Hawkins is Corporate Counsel, at Salesforce.

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