That excuse doesn't fly, says Pace v. United Servs. Automobile Ass'n, 2007 WL 2022059 (D. Colo. July 9).
The plaintiff's lawyers didn't show up to a settlement conference, because the spam filter caught the court's e-mail setting the conference date. The magistrate judge ordered the lawyers "to pay to defendant's reasonable and necessary attorney fees and expenses it incurred as a result of attending the scheduled settlement conference ... and for attending and participating in the hearings before this court [about the demand for fees]." The judge's reasoning:
[I]t would have been a very simple task to whitelist the United States District Court for the District of Colorado's domain name of "cod.uscourts.gov" to insure that such e-mails with this domain name would always be received.
Failure to perform this task makes the lawyers' failure to appear negligent and thus unjustified and sanctionable.