Rodman v. Safeway, Inc., No. 11-cv-03003-JST, 2016 WL 5791210 (N.C. Cal. Oct. 4, 2016)

Key Insight: Where an initial search of file names on a legacy drive (as opposed to the contents of the drive) did not identify ten responsive documents that were eventually produced after the close of discovery and a mere 7 days prior to trial, the court found that the search was an unreasonable inquiry under Rule 26(g) citing counsel?s failure to guide or monitor the employee conducting the search; the at-issue employee?s lack of experience conducting searches of large document repositories and the failure of counsel to ask the IT department to assist; and the objective unreasonableness of the search in light of the initial failure to search within the contents of the legacy drive and imposed monetary sanctions to address Plaintiff?s increased efforts as a result of the failure to timely produce the documents but reduced the award by 1/3 where Plaintiff would have had to expend some of the at-issue resources regardless and where Plaintiff failed to follow up when the employee who conducted the search indicated he did not know if he had searched within the files themselves

Electronic Data Involved: ESI from legacy drive

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