Laura K. Davis, et al. - Page 10

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          Ms. Lacorte’s Appearance                                                    
               On November 17, 2005, Ms. Lacorte filed an entry of                    
          appearance in each case.                                                    
          Amended Petitions                                                           
               On December 16, 2005, approximately 2-1/2 months before                
          commencement of the Las Vegas trial session, each petitioner                
          moved for leave to amend petition.  Those motions are signed by             
          Mr. Jones and Ms. Lacorte.  The accompanying amended petitions              
          were lodged with the Court on the same date, and, on December 19,           
          2005, we ordered respondent to respond to the motions for leave             
          to amend.  On January 5 and 6, 2007, we filed respondent’s                  
          objections to the motions.  On January 10, 2006, we granted all             
          of the motions, and we filed the amended petitions.3  Mr. Jones             
          executed each amended petition on behalf of the named petitioner.           
               In each amended petition, petitioner avers numerous                    
          instances of abuse of discretion by the settlement officer; viz,            

               3  Respondent objected to the motions on, among other                  
          grounds, that the proposed amendments were frivolous or                     
          groundless, provided no basis for relief, and were being raised             
          solely for the purpose of delay.  We granted the motions in light           
          of the facts before us and the standard set forth in Rule 41(a)             
          that leave to amend shall be freely given.  However, we directed            
          the attention of petitioners’ counsel to the provisions of Rule             
          33(b), concerning the effect of signing a pleading (see                     
          discussion of Rule 33(b) infra), and stated:  “At the trial of              
          this case, the Court expects petitioners’ counsel to show that              
          the claims in the amended petition are well grounded in fact and            
          otherwise supported as set forth in Rule 33(b).  The Court warns            
          petitioners and their counsel that, if justified, the Court will            
          not hesitate to impose sanctions and costs as provided for in               
          section 6673.”                                                              

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