Originally scheduled to begin this week in U.S. District Court, a new trial date has been set for October 9, 2012, in an environmental group’s lawsuit accusing a Maryland Eastern Shore farm family of polluting a Chesapeake Bay tributary.

The case, brought by the Waterkeeper Alliance and filed by a University of Maryland environmental law clinic, was postponed by Judge William M. Nickerson to encourage the sides to try to reach a settlement, according to media reports.

Judge Nickerson previously issued a ruling on March 1 denying both sides’ requests for Summary Judgment (that he rule on the case based on information provided without having a trial).  His ruling in its entirety provides a better understanding of the current status of the case.