Judge Catherine Shaffer
c/o King County Superior Court
516 3rd Ave, Room C-203
Seattle, WA 98104
Courtroom Number: W-829
Bailiff: Michael Getman-Gerbec
The Court always tries to review motions in a timely manner. However, with the current health crisis, many courts are working remotely. As such, there may be a delay in motions that are filed physically with the Clerk’s Office, as opposed to electronic submissions. Please be advised the Court will still review these motions as timely as possible, and please reach out to Judge Shaffer’s bailiff/law clerk with any questions or concerns.
Parties must comply with KCLR 7 when noting motions without argument. There is no need to confirm motions without oral argument with the court. Motions that fail to comply with the local rules will be stricken without prejudice.
Parties must contact the bailiff to schedule a motion with oral argument, including any cross motion. Dispositive motions are scheduled on Friday mornings. To request a hearing date, please call or email the bailiff and include the case name, cause number, and type of hearing requested. Parties should contact the court as soon as possible, as timeslots are limited and generally fill well in advance.
Settled Cases and to Strike a Motion
Please call or email the bailiff immediately if a case settles or if you wish to strike a motion you have filed from the court’s calendar.
In compliance with KCLR 16(a)(2), the court will issue a Pre-Trial Order and Order Requiring Completion of Joint Confirmation of Trial Readiness approximately six weeks before trial. Parties must comply fully with the order and follow its due dates. If you do not receive an order from the court, please contact the bailiff.
Request for Change of Trial Date
Motions or stipulated orders to continue the trial date must comply fully with KCLR40. Pleadings or orders that do not comply with the local rule will not be considered. For more information on scheduling issues, please read this memorandum on court policies.
Judge Shaffer conducts settlement conferences during the lunch hour (12:00 – 1:30pm) Monday through Thursday. Please email the bailiff to schedule your settlement conference at least two weeks in advance.
Before arriving for your conference, please make sure to read review CR 16 and KCLR 16 and comply with all the following requirements:
- Each party must provide a brief 3–5 page typewritten memorandum or letter at least five court days prior to the settlement conference date. This should outline the factual background, any prior negotiations and positions taken on the outstanding issues between the parties, and any other relevant information. The memorandum should also include the trial date, the assigned trial judge, and issues that the parties anticipate will, absent a settlement, be adjudicated at upcoming summary judgment hearings or at trial.
- Judge Shaffer will not read any attachments or supplementary materials and she will not read past the fifth page. The only exception to this rule is in family law cases—Judge Shaffer would like copies of any evaluation conducted by Family Court Services or a parenting evaluator. We encourage you to share your settlement memorandum or letters with the other party, but you are not required to do so.
- Each party must confirm attendance at least five court days prior to the settlement conference date. The court will likely cancel the conference if either party fails to comply.
- Clients with settlement authority must be present in person. The conference will not continue if communication with a party not present at the conference is required to resolve the case. We do not allow parties to appear by telephone. A party is not required to attend if another person is authorized to settle the case on their behalf.
The judge hearing the settlement conference will not hear the trial so that the parties may speak frankly at the conference.
Please notify this court immediately if you settle before the settlement conference.
Contact with the Court
Due to the high volume of court hearings, you may get a faster response if you email the bailiff directly. Please be sure to include the case name, cause number, and nature of your request. Be as specific as possible in your email.
Before filing a motion regarding discovery issues, please read this memorandum on court policies. This includes motions to seal or for a protective order. If the parties cannot resolve a discovery dispute, the parties are still welcome to file a motion. However, the parties may also schedule a conference call with Judge Shaffer before bringing such a motion. She will be available to counsel on both sides via phone within 1-3 court days of being contacted by the parties. Feel free to take advantage of this new policy if it will streamline discovery issues for the parties.
Judicial officers, including Judge Shaffer, do perform weddings outside of court hours for licensed parties. If you are interested in having Judge Shaffer perform a wedding, please call or email the bailiff for additional information.