Category: Case Summaries

1
Muhammad v. Mathena, No. 7:14cv00529, 2016 WL 8116155 (W.D. Va. Dec. 12, 2016)
2
LBI, Inc. v. Sparks, No. KNLCV, 2016 WL 351850 (Conn. Super. Ct. Jan. 4, 2016)
3
Official Comm. Of Unsecured Creditors of Exeter Holdings Ltd v. Haltman, No. CV 13-5475(JS)(AKT), 2015 WL 5027899 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 25, 2015); Official Comm. Of Unsecured Creditors of Exeter Holdings Ltd v. Haltman, No. CV 13-5475(JS)(AKT), 2016 WL 128154 (E.D.N.Y. Jan. 12, 2016)
4
T-Mobile USA, Inc. v. Huawei Device USA, Inc., No. C14-01351 RAJ, 2016 WL 1597102 (W.D. Wash. Apr. 20, 2016)
5
Moll v Telesector Res. Grp., Inc., No. 04-CV-0805S(Sr), 2016 WL 6095792 (W.D.N.Y. Oct. 19, 2016)
6
Delphi Commc?ns. Inc. v. Advanced Computing Techs. Inc., No. A15A1655, 2016 WL 1176998 (Ga. Ct. App. Mar. 28, 2016)
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Exclaim Mktg., LLC v. DIRECTV, Inc., No. 5:11-cv-684-FL, 2016 WL 1258776 (E.D. N.C. Mar. 28, 2016)
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Assoc. Elec. & Gas Ins. Servs. V. BendTec, Inc., No. 14-1602(MJD/LIB), 2016 WL 740409 (D. Minn. Feb. 24, 2016)
9
Frye v. CSX Transp., Inc., No. 14-cv-11996, 2016 WL 2758268 (E.D. Mich. May 12, 2016)
10
Sweltic Chiropractic & Rehab. Ctr, Inc. v. Foot Levelers, Inc., No. 2:16-cv-236, 2016 WL 1657922 (S.D. Ohio Apr. 27, 2016)

Muhammad v. Mathena, No. 7:14cv00529, 2016 WL 8116155 (W.D. Va. Dec. 12, 2016)

Key Insight: Prison employees? failure to preserve surveillance footage of inmate altercation despite notice of the obligation to do so was negligent; negligence imputed to other employees named as Defendants in Eighth Amendment claim where, despite the lack of a conventional agency relationship, the negligent/spoliating non-parties were not merely ?disinterested third parties? but rather were employees of the institution(s) responsible for preserving evidence in prisoner litigation and where requiring a conventional agency relationship would ?present a dilemma in the context of prison litigation .. where responsibility for preserving evidence may be spread out among multiple officials within an institute and where the institutions themselves are typically immune from suit?; as sanction, court forbade Defendants from putting on evidence related to Plaintiff?s disciplinary charges and conviction or the actual contents of the video and indicated it would instruct the jury that Plaintiff had requested the footage be preserved and it was not and that ?the jurors should not assume that the lack of corroborating objective evidence? undermined Plaintiff?s ?version of events surrounding the fight?

Nature of Case: Pro se Eighth Amendment Claims (prison litigation)

Electronic Data Involved: Surveillance footage

LBI, Inc. v. Sparks, No. KNLCV, 2016 WL 351850 (Conn. Super. Ct. Jan. 4, 2016)

Key Insight: Court declined to find ESI ?not reasonably accessible? because of the alleged cost of production where the case at issue was worth $4.5 million and thus the alleged costs did not appear ?sufficiently disproportionate,? where the defendant did not allege a lack of resources, and where defendant had a ?significant interest? in performing the discovery work in a manner that controlled costs but made two exceptions as to documents that would need to be culled and separately recoded and restored before they could be searched and as to documents that needed to be converted to a searchable format to determine tier potential relevance; court ordered parties to confer re: production protocol and cost shifting

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Official Comm. Of Unsecured Creditors of Exeter Holdings Ltd v. Haltman, No. CV 13-5475(JS)(AKT), 2015 WL 5027899 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 25, 2015); Official Comm. Of Unsecured Creditors of Exeter Holdings Ltd v. Haltman, No. CV 13-5475(JS)(AKT), 2016 WL 128154 (E.D.N.Y. Jan. 12, 2016)

Key Insight: Addressing motion for sanctions for the loss of emails in third party custody (GoDaddy), Iron Mountain back ups, and miscellaneous computer files, the Magistrate Judge concluded: 1)that Exeter had a duty preserve reasoning that since 2009 it had been involved in other litigation involving the disclosure of its books, records and financial documents, and that Exeter therefore knew or should have known that the documents ?could be relevant to future litigation? and also found that even if the filing of the 2009 lawsuit (involving different parties) did not trigger the preservation obligation, receipt of a 2009 subpoena should have and that in any event, the duty to preserve arose no later than Exeter?s 2011 bankruptcy filing; 2)that Exeter?s loss of ESI was ?intentional and done in bad faith? absent evidence of any effort to ensure preservation or to contact the third-party providers to inform them of the duty; and 3) that as a result of the intentional loss, a presumption of relevance was warranted and therefore recommended a sanction of an permissive adverse inference at trial; upon Exeter?s objection, District Court adopted the sanctions recommendation entirely and indicated that ?[W]hen there has been intentional destruction of evidence by an officer of a closely held corporation, other officers of the closely held entity may be subject to sanctions, even if they did not have direct control of the evidence at issue.?

Nature of Case: Plaintiff claims that Defendants defrauded Exeter?s creditors by transferring funds from Exeter to themselves, certain trusts, and other entities.

Electronic Data Involved: Email in third-party custody, Iron Mountain backups, miscelaneous ESI

T-Mobile USA, Inc. v. Huawei Device USA, Inc., No. C14-01351 RAJ, 2016 WL 1597102 (W.D. Wash. Apr. 20, 2016)

Key Insight: Motion for protective order granted where requested information was not relevant to claims or defenses plead and thus was outside of the scope of discovery

Nature of Case: Misappropriation of Trade Secrets

Electronic Data Involved: ESI, database

Moll v Telesector Res. Grp., Inc., No. 04-CV-0805S(Sr), 2016 WL 6095792 (W.D.N.Y. Oct. 19, 2016)

Key Insight: Addressing Plaintiffs? objection to a request for, essentially, all of Plaintiff?s Facebook content, the court cited Giacchetto v. Patchogue-Medford Union Free School Dist., No. 293 F.R.D. 112 (E.D.N.Y. 2013) for the proposition that ?routine status updates and/or communications on social networking websites are not, as a general matter, relevant to [plaintiff?s] claim for emotional distress damages, nor are such communications likely to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence regarding the same,? but further reasoned that ?post specifically referencing? Plaintiff?s emotional distress or at-issue treatment were discoverable and should be produced

Nature of Case: Motion to compel in case alleging discrimination, harassment, hostile environment, retaliation and unequal pay in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the New York State Human Rights Law and the Equal Pay Act

Electronic Data Involved: Social media/social network (Facebook)

Delphi Commc?ns. Inc. v. Advanced Computing Techs. Inc., No. A15A1655, 2016 WL 1176998 (Ga. Ct. App. Mar. 28, 2016)

Key Insight: Appellate court upheld trial court?s decision to strike defendants? answer and enter default judgment (as to one claim) as a spoliation sanction for Defendants? failure to preserve an image of their hard drives

Nature of Case: Claims against former employees and thier employer alleging copying of Plaintiff’s software products and solicitation of Plaintiff’s customers without consent

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Frye v. CSX Transp., Inc., No. 14-cv-11996, 2016 WL 2758268 (E.D. Mich. May 12, 2016)

Key Insight: Court entered order requiring production of software necessary to review responsive data and ordered that either Defendant would ?provide Plaintiff with a laptop computer loaded with a copy of the responsive data and the software necessary to review that data, to be used solely for the purposes of this litigation and to be returned to Defendants once the litigation is complete? or that Plaintiff could procure a license for the necessary software and be reimbursed by Defendant

Nature of Case: Wrongful death

Electronic Data Involved: Software necessary to review responsive data

Sweltic Chiropractic & Rehab. Ctr, Inc. v. Foot Levelers, Inc., No. 2:16-cv-236, 2016 WL 1657922 (S.D. Ohio Apr. 27, 2016)

Key Insight: Where third party refused to preserve potentially relevant evidence absent a court order and maintained a retention policy that would result in the automatic deletion of the at-issue information, court granted in part Plaintiff?s motion to compel preservation (finding that the requested scope of preservation appeared overly broad) but declined to compel forensic imaging

Nature of Case: Telephone Consumer Protection Act

Electronic Data Involved: Fax transmission reports and other ESI identifying fax numbers that received advertisements

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