U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia: Litigation in the Rocket Docket

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by | September 1, 2023

The slow pace of the legal system can be frustrating for clients who are often eager to quickly resolve their legal disputes.  This is particularly true in litigation, where complex cases can drag on for years.  However, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) prides itself on its speed.  Known as the “Rocket Docket,” EDVA is among the fastest federal courts in the nation with an average time of 11 months from case filing to trial. 

There are several advantages to litigation in the Rocket Docket.  First and foremost, efficiency.  The accelerated process significantly reduces the time it takes to resolve cases.  This allows clients to avoid the prolonged uncertainty, financial burden, and disruption that legal disputes often cause an individual or business.  Second, the speed of the Rocket Docket saves clients money.  The shorter duration of cases translates to reduced legal fees, court costs, and other associated expenses, benefitting both plaintiffs and defendants.  Finally, the Rocket Docket is more predictable than other forums.  Parties can better anticipate when their cases will be heard and resolved, providing a clearer timeline for planning and resource allocation.  In short, the Rocket Docket guarantees clients a shorter, cheaper, and more predictable lawsuit. 

The speed of the Rocket Docket can pose challenges as well, namely the heightened demand it places on litigants to be thoroughly prepared from the outset of the case.  For example, in the Rocket Docket, parties are afforded a limited window to conduct discovery, and objections to discovery must be filed much earlier than in most other courts.  This means that, unlike in traditional litigation which allows for more time for incremental adjustments and strategy refinement, the fast-paced nature of the Rocket Docket allows minimal room for error. 

With its office located just down the road, Moore, Christoff & Siddiqui often litigates in EDVA.  Our firm is accustomed to the speed of litigation and well-versed in EDVA rules and procedures.  We ensure that clients capitalize on the advantages of the Rocket Docket and do not get caught unprepared in the face of the Court’s expedited timeline.  For a consultation or more information about litigation in the Rocket Docket, contact our Office.