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Honorable Mark D. Houle

Judge Tabs


United States Bankruptcy Court
Central District of California
3420 Twelfth Street, Suite 365 / Courtroom 303
Riverside, CA 92501-3819

(951) 774-1021

Courtroom Deputy
(951) 774-1085

Court Recorder Contact
(951) 774-1085

Emergency Motion Contacts
(951) 774-1021
(951) 774-1023


Telephonic Instructions

Revised 6/6/19


Telephonic appearances are allowed in matters before Judge Mark D. Houle in Courtroom 303, except the following:

  1. Trials and evidentiary hearings (all counsel and all witnesses must appear in person). 
  2. Chapter 11 status conferences (debtor’s counsel must appear in person; other parties in interest may appear telephonically).
  3. Adversary proceeding initial status conferences and pretrial conferences (all trial counsel must appear in person).
  4. Chapter 11 and 13 confirmation hearings and Chapter 13 miscellaneous matters (debtor and debtor’s counsel must appear in person; and objecting parties and other parties in interest may appear telephonically).
  5. Reaffirmation hearings (debtor and debtor’s counsel must appear in person; other parties in interest may appear telephonically).
  6. Hearings on matters in which a timely opposition has been filed. 
  7. Any other matter designated by the court as requiring a personal appearance. 

In order to appear telephonically counsel must adhere to the following procedure:

Standard Procedure:

Telephone appearances may be arranged by calling Court Call, an independent conference call company no later than 2:00 p.m. the day prior to the hearing.  Counsel may reach Court Call at (888) 882-6878.

Emergency Procedure:

If an unexpected emergency arises that prevents counsel from following the standard procedure detailed above, counsel must telephone chambers and obtain a law clerk’s approval to appear telephonically. The Law Clerk may be reached at (951) 774-1021.  A law clerk will only approve late requests for legitimate and unanticipated emergencies. Once approved, counsel must notify the courtroom deputy of counsel’s approved telephonic appearance.  The courtroom deputy may be reached at (951) 774-1085. 

Once approved, counsel must also contact Court Call to arrange a telephonic appearance.  If Court Call is not able to accommodate counsel’s late request or if the Judge’s law clerk denies the request, counsel will not be permitted to appear telephonically and counsel must make an appearance in court, as usual. 

Individuals choosing to appear telephonically do so at their own risk.  Hearings generally will not be rescheduled due to missed connections.  Furthermore, in deciding to appear telephonically, counsel is agreeing to waive any prejudice attributable to quality deficiencies or irregularities of the record that may result.

To ensure the quality of the record, the use of cellular phones is prohibited except in the most extreme emergencies.  If an individual’s cellular phone is causing any interference, the court may ask that individual to disconnect from the hearing, and that individual will be deemed to have waived his or her appearance in the matter.  Similarly, if a cellular phone disconnects during a hearing, the party appearing on cellular phone will be deemed to have waived his or her appearance.

* Please note the change is effective as of December 6, 2012, allowing objecting parties to appear telephonically for chapter 13 hearings scheduled on that date.

Effective June 6, 2019

Printable version of Judge Houle's Telephonic Appearance Procedures

About the Judge



  • Salem State College, 1993, B.S. (summa cum laude) 
  • Boston College Law School, 1996, J.D.

Military Service:

  • United States Air Force, 1985 -1989
  • Massachusetts Air National Guard, 1989 - 1993

Career Record: 

  • 2000 - 2011, Associate, Senior Associate and Counsel, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP
  • 1998 - 2000, Associate, Winthrop Couchot, PC
  • 1996 - 1998, Rotating Law Clerk, U. S. Bankruptcy Court, Santa Ana Division
Tentative Rulings
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