Archive - November 13, 2007

Court Grants Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preservation Order
Defendant Not Required to Re-Produce Entire Document Production in Native Electronic Format

Court Grants Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preservation Order

In re Nat’l. Security Agency Telecomms. Records Litig., 2007 WL 3306579 (N.D. Cal. Nov. 6, 2007)

In this brief order, Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker granted plaintiffs’ motion for an order prohibiting the alteration or destruction of evidence during the pendency of the action.  Among other things, the court ordered:

Counsel are directed to inquire of their respective clients if the business practices of any party involve the routine destruction, recycling, relocation, or mutation of such materials and, if so, direct the party, to the extent practicable for the pendency of this order, either to

(1) halt such business processes;

(2) sequester or remove such material from the business process; or

(3) arrange for the preservation of complete and accurate duplicates or copies of such material, suitable for later discovery if requested.

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Defendant Not Required to Re-Produce Entire Document Production in Native Electronic Format

Schmidt v. Levi Strauss & Co., 2007 WL 2688467 (N.D. Cal. Sept. 10, 2007) (Not for Citation)

Plaintiffs brought this action under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, claiming they were terminated in retaliation for filing complaints about defendants’ alleged tax fraud and other accounting irregularities.  Among other relief requested in their motion to compel, plaintiffs asked the court to order defendants to reproduce, in native electronic format, all documents which they had produced over the course of the litigation.  The court noted that the precise documents plaintiffs were seeking, and the reasons why electronic versions were being sought, “have been somewhat of a moving target in their papers.”  The court observed that plaintiffs had originally suggested that certain (unidentified) documents had been edited or altered by defendants or by their attorneys.  However, the court found no indication in the record that defendants’ documents had been altered in any way – except to the extent that defense counsel added document production numbers, confidentiality labels and, in some instances, indicated that certain information had been redacted.

In their reply papers, plaintiffs explained that they needed the electronic versions of (unidentified) emails and attachments as well as all documents which contained information that did not fit on a standard 8.5″x11″ page.  They further claimed that they were unable to track which attachments were sent with any given email, and argued that they were unable to properly analyze hard-copy spreadsheets (some of which reportedly were hundreds of pages long) that contained financial information that ran over the margins of a standard page. Read More

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