Tag: Spoliation

1
Mathias v. Jacobs, 197 F.R.D. 29 (S.D.N.Y. 2000), vacated, 167 F. Supp. 2d 606 (S.D.N.Y. 2001)
2
Drnek v. Variable Annuity Life Ins. Co., 2004 WL 1098919 (D. Ariz. May 4, 2004)
3
Stevenson v. Union Pac. R.R. Co., 354 F.3d 739 (8th Cir. 2004)
4
Hildreth Mfg., LLC v. Semco, Inc., 785 N.E.2d 774 (Ohio Ct. App. 2003)
5
Mosaid Techs. Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., 2004 WL 2550306 (D.N.J. July 7, 2004) (“Mosaid I”)
6
Metro. Opera Ass?n, Inc. v. Local 100, 2004 WL 1943099 (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 27, 2004)
7
Strasser v. Yalamanchi, 783 So.2d 1087 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2001)
8
Ill. Tool Works, Inc. v. Metro Mark Prods., Ltd., 43 F. Supp. 2d 951 (N.D. Ill. 1999)
9
Mosaid Techs. Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., 224 F.R.D. 595 (D.N.J. 2004) (“Mosaid II”)
10
MPCT Solutions Corp. v. Methe, 1999 WL 495115 (N.D. Ill. July 2, 1999)

Mathias v. Jacobs, 197 F.R.D. 29 (S.D.N.Y. 2000), vacated, 167 F. Supp. 2d 606 (S.D.N.Y. 2001)

Key Insight: Plaintiff’s failure to preserve computer printouts and telephone lists loaded onto Palm Pilot did not warrant an adverse inference instruction, but did warrant monetary sanctions of $28,271.75 to be paid by party (not his attorney) to compensate the victim for attorneys’ fees and expenses arising both from additional discovery required to locate equivalent information by alternative means and from the motion practice necessitated by the spoliation

Nature of Case: Action seeking monetary damages and specific performance of stock option agreement

Electronic Data Involved: Hard copy material loaded onto Palm Pilot

Drnek v. Variable Annuity Life Ins. Co., 2004 WL 1098919 (D. Ariz. May 4, 2004)

Key Insight: Sanctions not warranted where plaintiffs made ?tenuous allegation? without any specific evidentiary support that defendants had implemented a new email document retention policy after litigation was commenced and that potentially relative emails may have been destroyed pursuant to the policy

Nature of Case: Claimed violations of the anti-fraud provisions of the Securities and Exchange Acts

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Stevenson v. Union Pac. R.R. Co., 354 F.3d 739 (8th Cir. 2004)

Key Insight: Adverse inference jury instruction against defendant for its prelitigation destruction of tape-recorded voice radio communications between train crew and dispatchers on date of collision was proper, but refusal to permit testimony offered by defendant to rebut the adverse inference was abuse of discretion

Nature of Case: Negligence

Electronic Data Involved: Tape-recorded voice radio communications

Hildreth Mfg., LLC v. Semco, Inc., 785 N.E.2d 774 (Ohio Ct. App. 2003)

Key Insight: Failure to preserve certain computer hard drives did not warrant sanctions where there was no reasonable possibility that the missing hard drives (which were obtained after protective order was issued) contained evidence of the theft of trade secret information

Nature of Case: Misappropriation of trade secrets and related torts

Electronic Data Involved: Computer hard drives

Mosaid Techs. Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., 2004 WL 2550306 (D.N.J. July 7, 2004) (“Mosaid I”)

Key Insight: Magistrate granted various discovery sanctions requested by plaintiff, including monetary sanctions and a jury instruction adverse to defendants based on destruction and non-production of email

Nature of Case: Patent infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Email

Metro. Opera Ass?n, Inc. v. Local 100, 2004 WL 1943099 (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 27, 2004)

Key Insight: On defendant’s motion for reconsideration, court again described numerous discovery failings by the defendants, concluded that it would adhere to its prior decision at 212 F.R.D. 178, and further rejected two new arguments belatedly advanced by defendant relating the merits of plaintiff’s underlying claims

Nature of Case: Opera company sued union

Electronic Data Involved: Email and electronic documents; hard drives

Strasser v. Yalamanchi, 783 So.2d 1087 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2001)

Key Insight: Affirming jury award for plaintiff, where plaintiff had been permitted to add claim for negligent destruction of evidence based on defendant’s failure to preserve electronic records and computer hard drive, court found no error in allowing plaintiff to introduce at trial evidence of defendant’s discovery misconduct. Court further concluded that strong statements of disapproval of defendant’s discovery abuses did not require trial judge’s recusal.

Nature of Case: Breach of contract suit between former partners

Electronic Data Involved: Computer hard drive

Ill. Tool Works, Inc. v. Metro Mark Prods., Ltd., 43 F. Supp. 2d 951 (N.D. Ill. 1999)

Key Insight: Defendant’s failure to preserve integrity of computer (dropping it repeatedly and apparent tampering, including disconnecting internal cables prior to court-ordered inspection) and failure to produce responsive electronic material warranted monetary sanctions

Nature of Case: Misappropriation of trade secrets

Electronic Data Involved: Hard drive, deleted files, electronically stored invoices

Mosaid Techs. Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., 224 F.R.D. 595 (D.N.J. 2004) (“Mosaid II”)

Key Insight: Following additional briefing by parties on attorneys’ fees and adverse inference instruction, magistrate awarded plaintiff $563,843 in fees and $2,998 in costs for its counsel’s efforts on sanctions motion and to secure discovery and crafted jury instruction based upon that adopted in Zubulake V

Nature of Case: Patent infringement

Electronic Data Involved: Email

MPCT Solutions Corp. v. Methe, 1999 WL 495115 (N.D. Ill. July 2, 1999)

Key Insight: Sanctions in form of preliminary injunction preventing defendant from contacting MPCT clients granted, after defendant violated preservation order by deleting documents from laptop and defragmenting hard drive, thus preventing the recovery of deleted data

Nature of Case: Enforcement of non-competition agreement

Electronic Data Involved: Electronic documents stored on laptop

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