Tag: FRCP 26(b)(1) Scope in General (effective Dec. 1, 2015)

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Flowrider Surf, Ltd. v. Pacific Surf Designs, Inc., No. 15cv1879-BEN (BLM), 2016 WL 6522807 (S.D. Cal. Nov. 3, 2016)
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E.E.O.C. v. The Amer. Coal Co., No. 3:15-cv-01293-SMY-PMF, 2016 WL 1639682 (S.D. Ill. Apr. 26, 2016)
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Yeti Coolers, LLC v. RTIC Coolers, LLC, No. A-15-CV-597-RP, 2016 WL 6916944 (W.D. Tex. Nov. 11, 2016)
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In re Bard IVC Filters Prod. Liab. Litig., —F.R.D.—, 2016 WL 4943393 (D. Ariz. Sept. 16, 2016)
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Mid. Am. Sols. LLC v. Vantiv, Inc., No. 1:16-mc-2, 2016 WL 1611381 (S.D. Ohio April 4, 2016)
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Kissing Camels Surgery Center, LLC v. Centura Health Corp., No. 12-cv-03012-WJM-NYW, 2016 WL 277721 (D. Colo. Jan. 22, 2016)
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Perez v. Mueller, No. 13-C-13-2, 2016 WL 3360422 (E.D. Wis. May 27, 2016)
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Nelson v Am. Family Mut. Ins. Co., No. 13-cv-607 (SRN/SER), 2016 WL 6917205 (D. Minn. May 13, 2016)
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In re Ex Parte Application of Global Energy Horizons Ltd., No. 14-3180, 2016 WL 1657889 (3d Cir. Apr. 26, 2016)
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Sharma v. BMW N. Amer. LLC, No. 13-cv-02274-MMC (KAW), 2016 WL 1019668 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 15, 2016)

Flowrider Surf, Ltd. v. Pacific Surf Designs, Inc., No. 15cv1879-BEN (BLM), 2016 WL 6522807 (S.D. Cal. Nov. 3, 2016)

Key Insight: The parties in this case agreed to produce ESI ?in accordance with the Southern District?s Order Governing Discovery of Electronically Stored Information.? Defendant sought production of all documents that ??hit? on the parties? agreed-upon search terms without further relevance review,? arguing that the terms were narrowly tailored and that any resulting hits were ?presumptively relevant and responsive.? Plaintiffs argued that Defendant?s interpretation of the order was contrary to law and conflicted with the language of Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1), among other things. Citing a declaration from Plaintiff?s CEO that the search hits, which for some terms numbered in the thousands or tens of thousands, contained a substantial number of irrelevant documents, the court agreed that ?culling for relevance [was] warranted.?

Nature of Case: Patent Infringement

Electronic Data Involved: ESI (search hits)

E.E.O.C. v. The Amer. Coal Co., No. 3:15-cv-01293-SMY-PMF, 2016 WL 1639682 (S.D. Ill. Apr. 26, 2016)

Key Insight: Where non-party argued that subpoena exceeded scope of EEOC?s authority because it sought information irrelevant to the claim of sex discrimination (e.g., information re: race) and was unduly burdensome because it would take the single HR Officer approximately 500 hours to respond and take her away from other important work for the corporation, the court found that the information sought was relevant (reasoning that the standard of relevance is broad and ?generous? and that the information could ?shed light on possible discriminatory hiring practices and thereby, lead to the discovery of admissible evidence?) and that the burden did not outweigh the benefit, reasoning that ?[[o]ther than the fact that its employment records are kept in paper format in southern Illinois, [the non-party] has not provided any reason as to why its corporate human resources department cannot assist in responding to the subpoena or why it could not hire temporary staff to assist.?

Nature of Case: Employment litigation: sex discrimination

Electronic Data Involved: Hard copy

Yeti Coolers, LLC v. RTIC Coolers, LLC, No. A-15-CV-597-RP, 2016 WL 6916944 (W.D. Tex. Nov. 11, 2016)

Key Insight: Where Defendant resisted searching certain emails arguing undue burden and that it was unlikely that responsive emails would be found but where no evidence of burden was submitted, where not even a cursory search of the emails was undertaken and where there were examples of the sorts of email sought produced from other employees, the court ordered Defendant to conduct the requested search; similarly, where Defendant offered no evidence of the alleged burden to review and produce the at-issue call recordings, where Plaintiff offered to bear the full cost of transcribing the messages, and where the court determined that the likelihood that the calls would be privileged was low, the court ordered Defendant to produce the raw audiofiles of its customer service calls and voicemail; notably, at the outset of its analysis the court noted that at least 10 attorneys had appeared for each party and that it was ?apparent that the issues at stake are significant,? including posing an ?existential risk? to Defendant and therefore concluded that ?any proportionality argument has a high bar to clear to be successful?

Nature of Case: Trademark infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Customer service emails, call recordings

In re Bard IVC Filters Prod. Liab. Litig., —F.R.D.—, 2016 WL 4943393 (D. Ariz. Sept. 16, 2016)

Key Insight: In this case, the parties disagreed on the discoverability of communications between Defendants? foreign subsidiaries and divisions and foreign regulators regarding the filters at issue in the case. Following analysis of the effects of the December 1, 2015 amendments on the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and of the specific facts of the case, the court determined that the at-issue communications were ?only marginally relevant? and was persuaded that ?the burden of [the] foreign discovery would be substantial.? Thus, the court concluded that Defendants were not required to search their foreign entities for communications with foreign regulators. In the course of its discussion of the amendments, the court stated: “Amended Rule 26(b)(1) was adopted pursuant to the Rules Enabling Act, 28 U.S.C. ? 2072 et. seq. That statute provides that ‘[a]ll laws in conflict with such rules shall be of no further force or effect after such rules have taken effect.’ Id., ? 2072(b). Thus, just as a statute could effectively overrule cases applying a former legal standard, the 2015 amendment effectively abrogated cases applying a prior version of Rule 26(b)(1). The test going forward is whether evidence is ‘relevant to any party?s claim or defense,’ not whether it is ‘reasonably calculated to lead to admissible evidence.'”

Mid. Am. Sols. LLC v. Vantiv, Inc., No. 1:16-mc-2, 2016 WL 1611381 (S.D. Ohio April 4, 2016)

Key Insight: Court denied motion to compel production of at-issue data in ?condensed format? where Plaintiff originally requested and was provided with the data in it its ?original and unaltered format? and where the requested re-production was not proportional to the needs of the case because relevant evidence had already been provided; Court denied request for inspection to test accuracy of data produced where Plaintiff had not yet taken full advantage of the data in hand (by failing to take advantage of certain Excel functions) and thus had no basis for questioning the accuracy, thus rendering an inspection out of proportion to the needs of the case

Nature of Case: Breach of contract, fraud and related claims

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Kissing Camels Surgery Center, LLC v. Centura Health Corp., No. 12-cv-03012-WJM-NYW, 2016 WL 277721 (D. Colo. Jan. 22, 2016)

Key Insight: Where Plaintiffs objected to Defendants? ?duplicative? requests and claimed they had already produced responsive documents but provided Defendants with no guidance as to where such documents could be found within the voluminous production, the court acknowledged that it would ?ordinarily? conclude that Plaintiffs had no obligation to identify responsive documents but, citing the volume of data at issue, the ?asymmetry of information regarding the production between Plaintiffs,? the time the case had been pending, and the fact that additional discovery would be required, the court concluded that Plaintiff should provide additional information and ordered that Defendants would be permitted to identify ten categories of requested documents that Plaintiffs claimed to be duplicative and that Plaintiffs must then identify documents responsive to those requests

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Perez v. Mueller, No. 13-C-13-2, 2016 WL 3360422 (E.D. Wis. May 27, 2016)

Key Insight: Where Defendants sought to compel discovery from the Secretary of the US Dept. of Labor, court found the proportionality factors in Rule 2(b)(1) ?easily tilt[ed] in favor of disclosure? reasoning that ?[t]he issues in this litigation are important from a public policy perspective, or at least they should be, lest the Secretary be engaging in years of unnecessary litigation at taxpayer expense? and also reasoning that the ?transaction at issue was for more than $13 million dollars? and that ?the federal government has unlimited resources? while Defendants were ?obviously financing their own defense.?

Nature of Case: ERISA

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Nelson v Am. Family Mut. Ins. Co., No. 13-cv-607 (SRN/SER), 2016 WL 6917205 (D. Minn. May 13, 2016)

Key Insight: Relying on Plaintiffs? delay in raising its problems with discover and the principle of proportionality, particularly ?the importance of the discovery in resolving the issues and whether the burden of production outweighs the discovery?s likely benefits,? the court denied Plaintiff?s motion to compel additional pre-certification discovery; court?s analysis included rejection of proposed sampling where it was clear that ?sampling would be the beginning rather than the end, of this issue? and because of Plaintiffs? delay in making the suggestions (?But this type of proposal should lead to meaningful conversations during discovery, not at the end of it.?; ?To attempt to begin negotiations about discovery at the end of the discovery period demonstrates at best a lack of diligence and at worst a lack of respect for the Court?s scheduling order.)

Nature of Case: Class action

Electronic Data Involved: Database, email

In re Ex Parte Application of Global Energy Horizons Ltd., No. 14-3180, 2016 WL 1657889 (3d Cir. Apr. 26, 2016)

Key Insight: Third Circuit affirmed denial of Global Energy Horizon?s motion to compel reasoning that the District Court was ?on firm ground? in determining the burden imposed upon the non-party would ?likely have been intrusive and burdensome in violation of Rule 45 despite Global?s offer to pay for reasonable cost? where responding to the subpoena seeking ?all communications between [the non-party?s] 400 to 450 employees? and another entity and any financial documents relating to certain technology would require that each employee be interviewed and their hard drives be copied and reasoning that the District Court was reasonable in deciding not to modify the subpoena where the non-party had already ?spent thousands of dollars and substantial time? responding to prior requests; Circuit Court also affirmed lower court?s finding that non-party was under no duty to preserve emails where the record ?did not lead the court to conclude? that the non-party ?should have known that litigation was imminent? and ?Global never sought a litigation hold on [the non-party?s] electronically stored information?

Electronic Data Involved: ESI

Sharma v. BMW N. Amer. LLC, No. 13-cv-02274-MMC (KAW), 2016 WL 1019668 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 15, 2016)

Key Insight: Court compelled production of requested document retention policies where it determined that the policies were relevant and ?may help Plaintiffs to determine the universe of responsive documents and evaluate any gaps in document production? and that the production was proportional to the needs of the case where the modest number of pages at issue rendered the burden of production ?likely minimal, while the benefit of such information would be substantial?

Nature of Case: Putative class action re: allegedly defective vehicles

Electronic Data Involved: Document retention policies

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