Archive: 2020

1
Marine Depot, Int’l, Inc. v. James River Grp., Inc. (S.D. Fla. Dec. 30, 2020)
2
In re Valsartan, Losartan, and Irbesartan Prods. Liab. Litig. (D.N.J. Dec. 2, 2020)
3
Laub v. Horbaczewski (C.D. Cal. 2020)
4
Abedin v. Palominos Osorio (N.Y.A.D. Nov. 12, 2020)
5
Milke v. City of Phoenix (D. Ariz. 2020)
6
In re: 3M Combat Arms Earplug Prods. Liab. Litig. (N.D. Fla., Oct. 2020)
7
Haroun v. ThoughtWorks, Inc. (S.D.N.Y. 2020)
8
Rich v. Butowsky (D.D.C., 2020)
9
Charlestown Capital Advisors, LLC v. Acero Junction, Inc. (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 30, 2020)
10
Carrington v Graden, (S.D.N.Y. 2020)

Marine Depot, Int’l, Inc. v. James River Grp., Inc. (S.D. Fla. Dec. 30, 2020)

Key Insight: Defendant asked the court to compel plaintiff to search its computers and servers for responsive documents and contended certain documents should exist and have not yet been produced. The court noted “Rule 34 is silent as to how a party must locate these responsive documents, and the measures a party must take in conducting its search.” Further, defendants offered no case law that would require plaintiff to search a location it had no reason to believe responsive documents would be located. Absent any factual basis to believe that additional search of plaintiff’s server is necessary or to rebut plaintiff’s sworn testimony that there are no relevant, non-duplicative documents stored there that have not already been produced, no further search was ordered and sanctions were not appropriate.

Nature of Case: Breach of contract

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Case Summary

In re Valsartan, Losartan, and Irbesartan Prods. Liab. Litig. (D.N.J. Dec. 2, 2020)

Key Insight: Defendants violated the Court ordered ESI protocol when it unilaterally adopted a CAL platform without input from Plaintiffs. Defendants failed to timely disclose their intentions to use TAR and collaborate in good faith with Plaintiffs on the TAR platform to be used prior to implementation. Due to the cost and time required for a manual review, the Court permitted Defendants to do a TAR review of its non-responsive documents using the protocol previously negotiated but not finalized by the parties.

Nature of Case: Products Liability

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic Documents Generally

Case Summary

Laub v. Horbaczewski (C.D. Cal. 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiffs sought Slack messages and defendants claimed they did not have access to the messages because of its level of Slack plan. The court instructed plaintiffs to pursue the Slack messages through a third party subpoena and defendants objected to the overbroad scope of the subpoena. The court concluded plaintiffs “credibly argued” that the Slack messages “may be relevant to the issues involved in this case,” but found that the request was not proportional to the needs of the case under the second prong of Rule 26(b)(1) because: (1) The defendants did not have access to the messages and requiring them to produce the messages would impose an undue burden and expense, and (2) the messages would likely be cumulative because the record was “replete with evidence of Plaintiffs’ involvement” and plaintiffs “offer no evidence that the private messages contain any novel or noteworthy information that warrant compelling their production.”

Nature of Case: Breach of contract

Electronic Data Involved: Instant messages

Case Summary

Abedin v. Palominos Osorio (N.Y.A.D. Nov. 12, 2020)

Key Insight: The court granted defendant’s motion to compel the minor plaintiff to sign authorizations to obtain her social media information. “[D]efendant demonstrated that records from [plaintiff’s] Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram accounts were ‘reasonably likely to yield relevant evidence.’” The ESI was relevant to alleged emotional and mental trauma plaintiff suffered as a result of the accident as evidenced by her social isolation and withdrawal.

Nature of Case: Personal injuries

Electronic Data Involved: Social media

Case Summary

Milke v. City of Phoenix (D. Ariz. 2020)

Key Insight: The court dismissed plaintiff’s civil rights action based on spoliation of physical and ESI evidence, and for failure to submit complete and accurate discovery responses. The court previously sanctioned plaintiff for spoliation of evidence and determined that lesser sanctions short of dismissal could not cure the prejudice to defendant. Plaintiff, her agents, and her counsel failed to preserve website and social media sites and took affirmative steps on multiple occasions to destroy the evidence after litigation became reasonably foreseeable.

Nature of Case: Civil Rights Act

Electronic Data Involved: Social media and websites

Case Summary

Haroun v. ThoughtWorks, Inc. (S.D.N.Y. 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiff has no basis to seek “discovery on discovery” from defendants. Plaintiff “does not identify any gaps in production of ESI, any reason to believe that documents have been deleted, or any basis for asserting that Defendants are not searching all relevant and reasonably available sources of ESI that would contain material responsive to Plaintiff’s document requests.” Plaintiff can inquire at deposition and review the document production to identify obvious gaps.

Nature of Case: Employment Discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Business documents

Case Summary

Rich v. Butowsky (D.D.C., 2020)

Key Insight: A rule 45 motion to quash subpoenas on electronic subpoenas for electronic identities of anonymous users uses the 2themart.com test and are very fact specific

Nature of Case: Defamation

Electronic Data Involved: User account information

Keywords: Murder, twitter, first amendment, motion to quash, subpoena, defamation

Charlestown Capital Advisors, LLC v. Acero Junction, Inc. (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 30, 2020)

Key Insight: Sanctions against Defendants were warranted. Defendants had a duty to preserve relevant ESI at the time of their deletion which occurred a year into the litigation. Defendants failed to take reasonable steps to preserve relevant ESI. Defendants failed to suspend their routine document retention/destruction policy, Defendants’ counsel failed to oversee or play a role in preserving or attempting to reconstruct relevant ESI until 5 months after their deletion, and Defendants’ restoration attempts were inadequate.

Nature of Case: Breach of Contract

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Case Summary

Carrington v Graden, (S.D.N.Y. 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiff was discovered to have fabricated emails. Court awarded over $500,000 in damages to Defendant.

Nature of Case: antitrust litigation

Electronic Data Involved: Emails

Keywords: sanctions,m fabricated evidence

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