Archive: December 23, 2005

1
Sanctions Not Warranted For Negligent Failure to Preserve Surveillance Video
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Motion for Exclusion of Evidence or Adverse Inference Denied as Untimely and Because Defendant Produced All Responsive Documents
3
Sanctions Against Defendant and Its Counsel Not Warranted In Contentious Discovery Dispute Involving Production of Email Stored on Backup Tapes

Sanctions Not Warranted For Negligent Failure to Preserve Surveillance Video

Hamilton v. Signature Flight Support Corp., 2005 WL 3481423 (N.D. Cal. Dec. 20, 2005)

In this employment discrimination case, the court decided that sanctions were not warranted for the defendant’s failure to preserve a surveillance video that captured an altercation between one of the plaintiffs and a customer. Although defendant preserved and produced what it claimed to be the only video of the incident, there was a gap in the middle of the tape, and the recording ended prematurely, as the incident appears to continue and the recording abruptly ends. Read More

Motion for Exclusion of Evidence or Adverse Inference Denied as Untimely and Because Defendant Produced All Responsive Documents

Wood v. Sempra Energy Trading Corp., 2005 WL 3465845 (D. Conn. Dec. 9, 2005)

In this wrongful termination case, the court denied plaintiff’s motion to preclude certain evidence or for the granting of an adverse inference against defendant. The court concluded that the timing of plaintiff’s motion, alone, provided sufficient reason to deny it. Discovery had closed in May 2004, and the court noted that plaintiff had not previously complained of any deficiencies in the defendant’s responses to discovery. It stated: “While a motion for an adverse inference can be filed just in advance of the trial itself, it should be preceded by efforts to compel compliance with discovery requests, and even motions for contempt.” The court noted that, while there had been motions to compel, “no follow-up motions” were filed by plaintiff. Read More

Sanctions Against Defendant and Its Counsel Not Warranted In Contentious Discovery Dispute Involving Production of Email Stored on Backup Tapes

Quinby v. WestLB AG, 2005 WL 3453908 (S.D.N.Y. Dec. 15, 2005)

In this gender discrimination suit, plaintiff sought sanctions against defendant and its counsel for their conduct in connection with the production of email stored on backup tapes. Earlier, the parties had sought the court’s intervention to resolve the scope of electronic discovery. At that time, the court ordered defendant to provide an affidavit addressing the technical issues raised by plaintiff’s discovery requests for emails and other electronic communications. Specifically, the court had directed the parties’ attention to Zubulake v. UBS Warburg LLC, 217 F.R.D. 309 (S.D.N.Y. 2003), and further directed that the affidavits address the devices used by defendant to store the data and the seven cost-shifting factors identified in the opinion. The court had further ordered defendant to produce for deposition a witness who could discuss the relevant e-discovery issues, and to restore, as a sample, the backup tape or tapes that contained emails from a particular time frame into a readable, searchable format. Read More

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