Archive: July 16, 2009

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Court Orders Adverse Inference for Spoliation of CEO’s Data but Finds No Obligation to Preserve Relevant Data of Third Party Consultants

Court Orders Adverse Inference for Spoliation of CEO’s Data but Finds No Obligation to Preserve Relevant Data of Third Party Consultants

Goodman v. Praxair Servs., Inc., 632 F. Supp. 2d 494 (D. Md. 2009)

In this case arising from a claim for breach of contract, plaintiff Goodman alleged that defendant Praxair Services, Inc. (formerly Tracer) (“Tracer/PSI”) spoliated relevant data and was deserving of sanctions.  Specifically, Goodman alleged that Tracer/PSI violated is duty to preserve when it failed to implement a litigation hold resulting in a significant loss of data, including the contents of relevant hard drives and emails, and where its CEO deliberately deleted data, among other things.  Goodman also sought sanctions for the spoliation of Tracer/PSI’s third-party consultants’ files.  The court granted in part and denied in part Goodman’s motion and ordered an adverse inference against Tracer/PSI.

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