Archive: 2020

1
Oracle USA, Inc. v. Rimini Street, Inc. et al. (D. Nev. 2020)
2
Livingston v. City of Chicago (Northern District of Illinois, 2020)
3
Murray v. City of Warren (E.D. Mich. 2020)
4
Oppenheimer v. Episcopal Communicators, Inc. (W.D. N.C. 2020)
5
Oppenheimer v. Episcopal Communicators (Western District of North Carolina, 2020)
6
Integrated Communications & Technologies v.Hewlett-Packard Financial Services Company (D. Mass. Aug. 13, 2020)
7
Maurice v. Allstate Insurance Co. (W.D. Wash. 2020)
8
Gross v. Chapman (N.D. Ill. July 28, 2020)
9
Brady v. APM Management, LLC (N.D. Ohio 2020)
10

Oracle USA, Inc. v. Rimini Street, Inc. et al. (D. Nev. 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiff filed a Motion to Compel based on Defendant’s (categorical) objections and assertion of attorney-client privilege over (software) source code in responding to discovery requests; Plaintiff specifically cited Defendant’s failure to provide an itemized privilege log for its objections. Defendant filed a Motion to seal the redacted information that it provided to Plaintiff despite the privilege objections.

The Court upheld Defendant’s objections, noting that objection(s) need not be in the form of a privilege log. Moreover, the Court granted the Defendant’s Motion to Seal the redacted information that it provided to Plaintiff despite its objections.

Nature of Case: Intellectual Property, Copyright Infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Source Code

Case Summary

Livingston v. City of Chicago (Northern District of Illinois, 2020)

Key Insight: A responding party is best suited to determine the method of review and using TAR to pre-cull documents from review is an acceptable methodology

Nature of Case: Hiring discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Emails

Keywords: Chicago, fire department, technology assisted review, TAR

View Case Opinion

Murray v. City of Warren (E.D. Mich. 2020)

Key Insight: The court agreed that plaintiff’s request for “all emails” from three custodians was overly broad and narrowed it to relevant search terms relating to plaintiff’s allegations of harassment. The court also relied on its prior ruling, directing the parties to confer regarding the search terms and if the parties cannot agree on appropriately limited search terms, they will share the cost of retaining an expert to assist them. If they still cannot agree, plaintiff can renew his motion and provide the court with an expert report substantiating his position.

Nature of Case: Employment discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Email, Personnel files

Case Summary

Oppenheimer v. Episcopal Communicators, Inc. (W.D. N.C. 2020)

Key Insight: The litigation was over Defendant’s purported copyright infringement due to Defendant’s publishing of a copyrighted photograph on its website. Defendant served its first discovery requests on Plaintiff; Plaintiff provided an untimely response with a number of objections including attorney-client privilege (without a privilege log), and “boilerplate objections”. Defendant filed a Motion to Compel, which was granted. Plaintiff provided a supplemental response, however, Defendant filed an additional Motion to Compel, and also sought attorney’s fees for the Motion. Besides privilege, at issue was Plaintiff’s objection to the proportionality of Defendant’s discovery requests.

The Court did not find Plaintiff’s “boilerplate objections”, including proportionality, persuasive. And found that they lack specificity and/or merit. Plaintiff’s objection(s) of confidentiality on the grounds of settlement, proprietary business information was rejected. Similarly, the Court rejected the Plaintiff’s privilege objection(s) due to Plaintiff’s failure to provide a privilege log.

In summary, the Court found that Plaintiff’s assertion of boilerplate objections (and failure to provide a privilege log) consisted of grounds overruling all of his objections. The Court granted Defendant’s Motion to Compel, and similarly, ordered Defendant to provide it an estimate of the attorney’s fees spent on the Motion (for the purpose of awarding Defendant attorney’s fees).

Nature of Case: Intellectual Property, Copyright Infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Digital Photograph

Case Summary

Oppenheimer v. Episcopal Communicators (Western District of North Carolina, 2020)

Key Insight: A non-moving party’s objections to discovery need to be more than boilerplate and must be specific

Nature of Case: Copyright infringement (DMCA)

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic documents generally

Keywords: Copyright, DMCA, photographs, Oppenheimer,

View Case Opinion

Integrated Communications & Technologies v.Hewlett-Packard Financial Services Company (D. Mass. Aug. 13, 2020)

Key Insight: Spoliation had occurred, but no default judgment issued. Evidence regarding destruction was allowed, no testimony from plaintiffs regarding unpreserved ESI and adverse inference instruction.

Nature of Case: Breach of Contract

Electronic Data Involved: Emails and Computers

Keywords: adverse inference, sanctions

View Case Opinion

Maurice v. Allstate Insurance Co. (W.D. Wash. 2020)

Key Insight: Defendant had a Motion to Compel Plaintiff to produce information and documents regarding physical and emotional injuries that she purportedly sustained during the accidents giving rise to litigation.

Among the information sought by Defendant were documents and information regarding the negative impact a motor vehicle accident on her social life, hobbies and activities. This included communications, emails, text messages, photographs, video and Facebook posts. Defendant’s Motion was granted, however, Defendant’s request for attorney’s fees and expenses was denied.

Nature of Case: Insurance Contract

Electronic Data Involved: Emails, Text Messages, Photographs, Video and Facebook Posts

Case Summary

Gross v. Chapman (N.D. Ill. July 28, 2020)

Key Insight: Bride and groom called off their wedding after a dispute arose over whether it should be an “adults only” affair. The bride’s parents sued the groom’s parents claiming they were out over $100,000 in wedding costs. After defendants produced 5,000 text messages, the court declined to grant further discovery into the process surrounding how the text messages were collected. A large volume of ESI had already been produced at significant expense to defendants and plaintiff’s motion to compel was based on speculation— “discovery on discovery with no basis other than plaintiffs’ hopeful guess that there must be more texts” and was substantially out of proportion to the needs of the case.

Nature of Case: Invasion of Privacy

Electronic Data Involved: Text Messages

Case Summary

Brady v. APM Management, LLC (N.D. Ohio 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiff’s Motion for Sanctions was granted and denied in part. Defendants had failed to produce documents and comply with discovery obligations. The Court concluded that Defendants, but not Defendants’ counsel, had acted in bad faith by making misrepresentations, and issued monetary sanctions against Defendants and barred a previously pled defense. The Court denied Plaintiff’s request of a sanction of precluding Defendants from raising a new defense. Moreover, the Court declined to award fees and costs for Plaintiff’s Motion to Compel Defendants to produce financial records.

Nature of Case: Wrongful Termination, Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”)

Electronic Data Involved: N/A

Case Summary

Key Insight: Court rejected additional discovery based off proportionality and discovery already produced. There was no additional proof of unproduced, relevant texts.

Electronic Data Involved: Text Messages

Keywords: additional discovery, proportionality

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