Archive: December 1, 2005

1
Jinks-Umstead v. England, 232 F.R.D. 142 (D.D.C. 2005)
2
In re Natural Gas Commodity Litig., 2005 WL 3036505 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 14, 2005)
3
Burgess v. Goord, 2005 WL 1458236 (N.D.N.Y. June 15, 2005)
4
Steadfast Ins. Co. v. Purdue Frederick Co., 2005 WL 3511085 (Conn. Super. Ct. Nov. 30, 2005) (Unpublished)
5
Okoumou v. Safe Horizon, 2005 WL 2431674 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 30, 2005)
6
Export-Import Bank of U.S. v. Asia Pulp & Paper Co., Ltd., 2005 WL 3078208 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 17, 2005)
7
United States ex rel. Smith v. Boeing Co., 2005 WL 2105972 (D. Kan. Aug. 31, 2005)
8
Fryer v. Brown, 2005 WL 1677940 (W.D. Wash. July 15, 2005)
9
Appraisal Mgmt. Co. III v. FNC, Inc., 2005 WL 3088561 (N.D. Ohio Nov. 17, 2005)
10
Harbuck v. Teets, 2005 WL 2510229 (11th Cir. Oct. 12, 2005)

Jinks-Umstead v. England, 232 F.R.D. 142 (D.D.C. 2005)

Key Insight: Court denied plaintiff’s motion to reject defendant’s attorney-client privilege and work product claims, finding that crime/fraud exception did not apply, that defendant had not waived privilege, and that plaintiff had not demonstrated a substantial need for the material; court also noted that defendant had previously been sanctioned for the discovery conduct complained of and that it would be inappropriate to sanction defendant again for the very same conduct

Nature of Case: Employment discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Drafts of discovery responses and email claimed to be privileged

In re Natural Gas Commodity Litig., 2005 WL 3036505 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 14, 2005)

Key Insight: Court narrowed scope of subpoena and ordered plaintiff and third party to negotiate a reasonable “sample” protocol and search protocol to expedite production, limit the burden and perhaps develop information to return to court to refine the court’s ruling

Nature of Case: Securities class action

Electronic Data Involved: Spreadsheets

Burgess v. Goord, 2005 WL 1458236 (N.D.N.Y. June 15, 2005)

Key Insight: Court denied inmate’s request to preserve videotapes allegedly showing he was denied food trays because they were irrelevant to inmate’s claims; complaint alleged that he was denied medical treatment and should be transferred to another facility, not that he was denied food trays

Nature of Case: Inmate sought injunctive relief transferring him to a different facility

Electronic Data Involved: Videotape

Steadfast Ins. Co. v. Purdue Frederick Co., 2005 WL 3511085 (Conn. Super. Ct. Nov. 30, 2005) (Unpublished)

Key Insight: Deciding there should be a presumption in favor of finding inadvertence, court denied plaintiff’s motion to compel production of privileged documents “recalled” by defendant under stipulated inadvertent production provision; court further advised that (1) production of documents without any privilege review whatsoever is not an inadvertent, but rather a purposeful, act unless the parties had an agreement otherwise; and (2) the purpose of the parties’ inadvertent production provision was not to allow the producing party to consciously change its mind post-production about whether or not to claim the privilege

Nature of Case: Insurance coverage

Electronic Data Involved: Privileged email

Okoumou v. Safe Horizon, 2005 WL 2431674 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 30, 2005)

Key Insight: Although plaintiff was free to pursue discovery of archived emails on obsolete email system, the extent to which those emails were discoverable and the allocation of costs to restore them would require further analysis; court directed plaintiff to notify the court if she intended to pursue the archived email

Nature of Case: Wrongful termination

Electronic Data Involved: Archived email from obsolete email system

Export-Import Bank of U.S. v. Asia Pulp & Paper Co., Ltd., 2005 WL 3078208 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 17, 2005)

Key Insight: Court allowed reopening of discovery and ordered plaintiff to produce former employee’s personal journals that were relevant to parties’ dispute, where former employee revealed existence of journals in deposition taken during last week of discovery; court further granted defendant leave to subpoena former employee directly in the event plaintiff was unable to take possession of the journals

Nature of Case: Action to recover promissory note debt

Electronic Data Involved: Former employee’s personal journal maintained on home computer

United States ex rel. Smith v. Boeing Co., 2005 WL 2105972 (D. Kan. Aug. 31, 2005)

Key Insight: Court denied plaintiffs’ motion for a preservation order, finding that plaintiff had not made a showing of a significant threat that documents would be lost or destroyed absent entry of an immediate order, and concluding that the regular procedures for discovery (including the court’s Electronic Discovery Guidelines) were sufficient and appropriate

Nature of Case: False Claims Act

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic evidence

Fryer v. Brown, 2005 WL 1677940 (W.D. Wash. July 15, 2005)

Key Insight: Noting that a responding party “must cover the costs of gathering the requested item; not to cover the costs of reproduction absent a showing of good cause as to why the burden should be shifted,” court instructed plaintiff to provide hard copies of its website as defendant had requested, at defendant’s expense

Nature of Case: Copyright and trademark infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Website pages

Appraisal Mgmt. Co. III v. FNC, Inc., 2005 WL 3088561 (N.D. Ohio Nov. 17, 2005)

Key Insight: Court dismissed complaint as discovery sanction finding that: (1) plaintiff’s failure to cooperate in discovery was willful, (2) plaintiff’s conduct had prejudiced the defendant by impairing its ability to prepare its defense, (3) plaintiff had received sufficient warnings that its failure to cooperate could lead to dismissal, and (4) lesser sanctions would not protect the integrity of pretrial procedures or ameliorate the prejudice already visited upon the defendant

Nature of Case: Misappropriation of trade secrets and related claims

Electronic Data Involved: Email and computer code

Harbuck v. Teets, 2005 WL 2510229 (11th Cir. Oct. 12, 2005)

Key Insight: District court did not abuse its discretion where, in course of discovery dispute, it ordered both parties to submit their copies of data to the district court’s Information Technology personnel to see if the material could be retrieved, and denied plaintiff’s motion to compel when court’s personnel had no problems retrieving the data

Nature of Case: Employment discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Email and electronic documents

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