Archive: 2020

1
McMaster v. Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. (E.D. Mich. 2020)
2
Berg v. M & F Western Products, Inc. (E.D. Tex. 2020)
3
Alsadi v. Intel Corporation (D. Ariz. 2020)
4
Alsadi v. Intel Corporation (D. Az., 2020)
5
QueTel Corp v. Hisham Abbas (4th Cir., 2020)
6
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. M1 5100 Corporation (E.D. Fla. 2020)
7
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. M1 5100 Corp., d/b/a Jumbo Supermarket, Inc. (S.D. Fl. , 2020)
8
Densen v. The Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints (D. Utah 2020)
9
Denson v. Corp. of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (D. Utah, 2020)
10
EEOC v. George Washington Univ. (D.D.C. June 26, 2020)

McMaster v. Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. (E.D. Mich. 2020)

Key Insight: The litigation was over purported employment discrimination based on age and/or disability. Plaintiff’s Second Motion to Compel specifically sought emails from an employee of Defendant for the purpose of establishing a pattern of age and/or disability discrimination. The Court found that the emails were relevant to the litigation, and chose a date range other than that request by the parties.

The larger disagreement between the parties was over the search terms to be utilized for finding the emails. The Court ordered the parties, if they could not agree on terms, to retain an expert to assist them, and if they still could not agree, to return to Court with the opinion of the expert. Plaintiff’s Second Motion to Compel was partially granted and partially denied.

Nature of Case: Employment Discrimination, Disability Discrimination, Wrongful Termination, ADA

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Case Summary

Berg v. M & F Western Products, Inc. (E.D. Tex. 2020)

Key Insight: Defendant filed a Motion to Compel Plaintiff that was granted by the Court. The Court ordered Plaintiff to conduct a full search of all documents in hard and electronic formats conduct, including but not limited to all data on social media platforms, demand letters issued by Plaintiff or his counsel to third parties referencing this case, documents and materials of Plaintiff’s company, and documents and materials related to the litigation that are in the custody and control of Plaintiff’s current or prior lawyers. The Motion’s request(s) that Plaintiff be compelled to attend his deposition and testify at trial in-person were denied.

Nature of Case: Copyright Infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Social Media, Electronic Documents

Case Summary

Alsadi v. Intel Corporation (D. Ariz. 2020)

Key Insight: The meaning of ESI is expansive, includes any type of information stored electronically, and is not limited to data stored on a computer system. Rule 37(e), not inherent authority, is the legal standard for determining whether and what sanctions are appropriate for the loss of discoverable ESI. A negative inference sanction with only be imposed if the spoliating party intentionally lost or destroyed data so it could not be used in litigation.

Nature of Case: Tort

Electronic Data Involved: Detector Device Data

Case Summary

Alsadi v. Intel Corporation (D. Az., 2020)

Key Insight: Court ruled that ESI is expansive and includes information stored electronically, not just information on a computer system as plaintiffs argued. FRCP overrules state law or inherent power to sanction. No negative inference allowed.

Nature of Case: negligence, loss of consortium

Electronic Data Involved: records of ambient gas levels

Keywords: sanctions, negative inference, inherent authority

View Case Opinion

QueTel Corp v. Hisham Abbas (4th Cir., 2020)

Key Insight: Defendants had deleted relevant files just before forensic imaging occurred. Court sanctioned Defendant and issue permanent injunction.

Nature of Case: Copyright infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Source Code and files on laptops

Keywords: sanctions, injunctions, source code

View Case Opinion

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. M1 5100 Corporation (E.D. Fla. 2020)

Key Insight: Counsel has a duty to oversee their clients’ collection of information and documents during the discovery process, especially when ESI is involved. Here, counsel failed to adequately supervise the ESI collection process. Counsel had no knowledge of the search efforts or process taken by Defendant is its discovery collection. Ultimately, the Defendant was given a final opportunity to produce responsive discovery. The parties were ordered to attempt to come to an agreement regarding and ESI protocol that included relevant data sources, custodians, and search terms.

Nature of Case: Employment Discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic Documents Generally

Case Summary

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. M1 5100 Corp., d/b/a Jumbo Supermarket, Inc. (S.D. Fl. , 2020)

Key Insight: Defendant “self-collected” without involvement of counsel. Court gave defendant one last chance to produce as 5 months remained in discovery, with active involvement of counsel.

Nature of Case: Age discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Various ESI

Keywords: certification, party collection

View Case Opinion

Densen v. The Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints (D. Utah 2020)

Key Insight: A forensic imaging of Plaintiff’s electronic devices and cloud based accounts was warranted because Plaintiff lost relevant evidence during the discovery process and continually made misrepresentations regarding this evidence and how it was stored. The forensic imaging would preserve any evidence and possible recover evidence that has been loss. This would not be an invasion of privacy as Plaintiff’s privacy can be adequately protected. A third party service provider can image the devices and collect the data. Counsel would not have access to any of the data until after the court approves a review plan, which would implement additional safeguards to ensure there is no access to irrelevant or private information.

Nature of Case: Sexual Assault, Fraud

Electronic Data Involved: Audio Recording, Cloud Based Account Data, Electronic Device Data

Case Summary

Denson v. Corp. of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (D. Utah, 2020)

Key Insight: Plaintiff’s explanation regarding loss of evidence had changed and court ruled that defendant was entitled to have a third party collect and preserve the evidence. Plaintiff offered passwords to accounts, but court was concerned about possible destruction given Plaintiff’s changing explanation regarding social media accounts and recording.

Nature of Case: Sexual Assault

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic Devices and Cloud Based Accounts; Recording of conversation

Keywords: invasion of privacy, loss of evidence

View Case Opinion

EEOC v. George Washington Univ. (D.D.C. June 26, 2020)

Key Insight: Under FRE 502(d), inadvertent disclosures do not result in a waiver of privilege. While this rule can be utilized to reduce costs of pre-production privilege review, a party cannot be forced to engage in a discovery process that would likely result in the production of privileged documents.

Nature of Case: Employment Discrimination, Equal Pay, Title VII

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Case Summary

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