United States District Court, D. Nevada
MIRANDA M. DU UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Defendants' motion to enforce settlement
(“Motion”). (ECF No. 24.) Plaintiff filed a
response (ECF No. 29) and Defendants filed a reply (ECF No.
30). Plaintiff then filed a response to Defendants' reply
(ECF No. 31). Plaintiff did not obtain leave of court to file
his sur-reply as required under LR 7-2(b). Defendants'
motion to strike Plaintiff's sur-reply (ECF No. 32) is
granted. Defendants' motion for leave to file
Plaintiff's medical records under seal (ECF No. 25) is
granted. For the reasons discussed below, Defendants'
Motion is granted.
who is a prisoner in the custody of the Nevada Department of
Corrections (“NDOC”), submitted a civil rights
complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff
alleges that for eight years, Plaintiff has had severe pain
in the right area of his stomach. (ECF No. 4 at 3.) Plaintiff
alleges he has gone to medical many times over the years to
request accurate diagnosis and proper treatment but prison
officials have denied Plaintiff's requests for outside
screening of the complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1915A, the Court permitted Plaintiff to proceed on two claims
for deliberate indifference to serious medical needs against
Defendants Dr. Sanchez, Williams, and Cox. (ECF No. 3.) The
Court stayed the case to allow the parties to participate in
mediation held on March 25, 2016, the parties reached a
settlement that was placed on the record by the mediator.
(ECF No. 7.) The settlement terms involved Defendants
agreeing to (1) have a medical doctor review Plaintiff's
medical records within 30 days of the signing of the
settlement agreement; (2) provide for Plaintiff to have an in
person meeting with the medical doctor about his medical
status within 30 days of the signing of the settlement
agreement; and (3) take all necessary medical actions based
on such doctor's recommendations. (ECF No. 14 at 3-4.) In
exchange, Plaintiff agreed to dismiss this case.
(Id.) The mediator informed Plaintiff to expect a
document that will memorialize the terms that they discussed.
(Id. at 4.) Defendants subsequently reported that
Plaintiff refused to sign the settlement agreement or a
stipulation to dismiss this case after having received some
of the benefits under the settlement agreement. (ECF No. 13.)
offer evidence to show that consistent with the settlement
terms, on April 4, 2016, Plaintiff was transported to
Southern Desert Medical to have a personal consultation with
an NDOC medical provider, Dr. Vicuna, to go over
Plaintiff's medical concerns. (ECF No. 24. at
3-4.) A Correctional Charge Nurse attended the consultation
with Dr. Vicuna. (Id. at 3.) However, Plaintiff
later indicated that he did not want a nurse present at the
consultation and he wanted to consult an outside specialist.
(ECF No. 24-7.)
Motion asks the Court to enforce the terms of the
parties' settlement agreement and either declare that the
Court has jurisdiction to dismiss this case or to order
Plaintiff to enter into a stipulation to dismiss this case
pursuant to the terms of the parties' settlement
agreement as placed on the record. (ECF No. 24.) The Court
finds that it has jurisdiction to dismiss this case based on
the terms of court ordered mediation.
has the equitable power to enforce an oral settlement
agreement when the parties placed the material terms of the
settlement agreement on the record. See Doi v. Halekulani
Corp., 276 F.3d 1131, 1134 (9th Cir. 2002).
“However, the district court may enforce only
complete settlement agreements.” Callie v.
Near, 829 F.2d 888, 890 (9th Cir. 1987) (emphasis in
original). In Doi, the parties had negotiated
settlement terms that were placed on the record and agreed
that they would sign a written agreement to memorialize the
terms and a stipulation for dismissal. The plaintiff
subsequently declined to sign the written agreement or
proposed stipulation. The district court found that the oral
settlement agreement was binding and granted the
defendant's motion to enforce. The Ninth Circuit Court of
Doi, the parties reached a meeting of the minds on
material terms that the mediator placed on the record. The
terms require Defendants to do three things: (1) have medical
doctor review Plaintiff's medical records, (2) allow for
Plaintiff to personally consult with a medical doctor about
his medical conditions and (3) take all necessary medical
actions based on such doctor's recommendations. (ECF No.
14 at 3-4.) In exchange, Plaintiff agreed to dismiss this
action. (Id.) Defendant was required to perform the
first two items within 30 days from signing of the settlement
agreement. (Id.) The mediator confirmed with
Plaintiff that he understood and agreed to these terms.
(Id. at 4.) It was understood that a written
settlement agreement would be prepared to memorialize these
terms (id. at 4); the parties did not agree to leave
any terms to be addressed later. Thus, the settlement
agreement was complete and all that remained was for the
terms to be reduced to writing.
argues that Defendants have not performed their part of the
agreement because an NDOC nurse was present at the
face-to-face meeting with the doctor, and the doctor would
not address Plaintiff's concerns nor agree to his request
to be seen by an outside specialist. (ECF No. 29.) However,
the agreement did not address whether a nurse may be present
during Plaintiffs consultation with the doctor. The agreement
leaves it up to the medical doctor to make recommendations,
but does not dictate what actions the doctor has to take
after the meeting with Plaintiff. The parties did not agree
that the medical doctor would be an outside provider. The
parties did agree, however, that Defendants would take all
medically necessary actions recommended by the doctor. (ECF
No. 14 at 3.) That Plaintiff disagrees with the doctor's
recommendations is not a basis for Plaintiff to challenge
formation of the settlement agreement based on the terms
placed on the record. (ECF No. 24-7.)
parties reached a complete settlement agreement during the
mediation based on the terms placed on the record. That
agreement requires Plaintiff to dismiss this action in
exchange for Defendants' agreement to address
Plaintiff's medical concerns. ...