Mealey's Discovery

  • June 21, 2022

    Foreclosure-Related Suit Remanded So Limited Discovery Can Be Conducted

    BOSTON — A federal district court erred in part in denying a motion filed by homeowners in a foreclosure dispute to defer adjudication of a motion for summary judgment to provide the homeowners with an opportunity to conduct limited discovery, a First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled June 17 in affirming in part, reversing in part and remanding.

  • June 21, 2022

    Texas Appellate Panel Conditionally Grants Mandamus In Construction Case

    BEAUMONT, Texas — A Texas appellate panel on June 9 ruled that a trial court judge abused his discretion and a writ of mandamus will be issued if the judge does not vacate an order granting “death sentence” sanctions against two real estate developers after homebuyers argued that the developers abused the discovery process during a construction defects case.

  • June 16, 2022

    Labor Secretary, Company Dispute Part Of Proposed Confidentiality Order

    CHIGAGO — Parties in a suit over an administrative subpoena by the secretary of Labor have largely agreed on a proposed confidentiality order but disagree on one paragraph pertaining to the secretary providing documents to other government agencies, they told an Illinois federal court in filings dated May 27 and June 13.

  • June 15, 2022

    Judge Denies Unopposed Continuance Requests In Summons Enforcement Cases

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — In separate June 6 paperless orders in three cases stemming from a single U.S. petition to enforce Internal Revenue Service summonses issued as part of a tax liability examination related to captive insurance companies, a federal judge in Florida denied the defendants’ unopposed motions to continue the briefing schedule and a hearing set for July 8.

  • June 15, 2022

    Magistrate Judge: Asbestos Plaintiffs Don’t Have Info Guaranty Association Seeks

    BATON ROUGE, La. — A Louisiana federal magistrate judge on June 13 denied a motion to compel responses to discovery filed by the Louisiana Insurance Guaranty Association (LIGA), the statutory obliger for an insolvent insurer in an asbestos exposure suit filed against the insurer, finding that plaintiffs lack the information requested and that LIGA’s settlement-related request is “premature.”

  • June 15, 2022

    Judge Sets Hearing, Appoints Ethics Expert For Asbestos Pathology Testing Spat

    OAKLAND, Calif. — During a June 10 proceeding a California judge set an August hearing where a court-appointed bioethics expert will opine on scientific procedures involving personal medical information and said that in the interim plaintiffs need not produce asbestos pathology material to the defendants but may continue to test existing samples as long as they preserve material for potential future production.

  • June 15, 2022

    Bankruptcy Judge Gives Insurer’s Liquidators OK For Dozens Of Subpoenas

    NEW YORK — In three orders issued June 14, a New York federal bankruptcy judge authorized the joint provisional liquidators (JPLs) of Bermuda insurer and reinsurer PB Life and Annuity Co. Ltd. (PBLA) and other debtors to issue subpoenas directing production of documents to dozens of entities and individuals including debtor investment counterparties and certain non-insider third parties — of which the latter includes Google LLC.

  • June 15, 2022

    Anonymous Tweeter Asks High Court To Decide Standard For Unmasking Doe Defendants

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Appealing a trial court’s issuing of a subpoena to identify her in an underlying defamation lawsuit and asserting her right to speak anonymously online, a Jane Doe defendant filed a petition for certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court on June 7, asking the court to provide a nationwide standard for compelling Does’ identities instead of the existing “patchwork of standards of review among federal courts.”

  • June 14, 2022

    Judge: Health Insurance Class Must Produce Members, Not Attorney Communications

    HARRISBURG, Pa. — Counsel for a class of individuals allegedly deceived by the marketing about the extent of a health insurance plan’s out-of-network coverage must produce class members and potential class members, but communications between those individuals and lawyers are protected, a federal judge in Pennsylvania said June 3.

  • June 13, 2022

    High Court Nixes Section 1782 Discovery For Nongovernmental Foreign Arbitrations

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Resolving a circuit split, the U.S. Supreme Court on June 13 in two consolidated cases reversed two courts and ruled that district court assistance with discovery is not available to private commercial arbitrations or ad hoc international arbitral tribunals, holding that the statute applies only to foreign tribunals imbued with governmental authority.

  • June 13, 2022

    Supreme Court Rebuffs State Secrets Privilege Question In NSA Surveillance Row

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A lower court’s ruling disposing of claims under the Stored Communications Act (SCA) and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) over the National Security Agency’s domestic data-collection activities will stand, with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on June 13 to deny a group of U.S. citizens’ petition for certiorari in which they questioned whether either statute displaced the state secrets privilege in their suit.

  • June 13, 2022

    High Court Nixes Section 1782 Discovery For Nongovernmental Foreign Arbitrations

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Resolving a circuit split, the U.S. Supreme Court on June 13 in two consolidated cases reversed two courts and ruled that district court assistance with discovery is not available to private commercial arbitrations or ad hoc international arbitral tribunals, holding that the statute applies only to foreign tribunals imbued with governmental authority.

  • June 13, 2022

    Discovery Sanctions, Summary Judgment Ruling Issued In Meta Data-Harvesting Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — Meta Platforms Inc. was handed a mixed victory on June 6 when a California federal magistrate judge partly granted its motions for spoliation sanctions and partial summary judgment in a suit in which the social network operator brings claims for computer fraud and unfair competition against a consulting firm that scraped user data from Facebook.

  • June 10, 2022

    Capital One Hacker Denied Access To Unredacted Expert Witness Emails

    SEATTLE — A former Amazon Web Services Inc. employee, who is on trial for computer fraud in connection with hacking the computer systems of Capital One Financial Corp., was denied full access to unredacted emails of two of the government’s expert witnesses on June 8, with a Washington federal judge finding that the defendant did not establish that the withheld portions contained any information upon which the witnesses relied, thus leaving the emails protected under the work product doctrine intact.

  • June 10, 2022

    Summary Judgment Sought In Reinsurance Row; Parties Also File Motions To Exclude

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — A reinsurer on June 7 filed a motion and 146-page brief seeking summary judgment on all claims and counterclaims in a breach of contract dispute over reinsurance billings, telling an Alabama federal court that “no genuine issue of material fact exists” and arguing in part that the insurer failed to apply the plain language of the contracts and to uphold its obligations.

  • June 09, 2022

    Judge Sets Hearing, Appoints Ethics Expert For Asbestos Pathology Testing Spat

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A dispute over whether and to what extent defendants in an asbestos action may perform testing on pathology materials will come before a California judge on June 10 after the judge appointed an expert on biomedical ethics in what is at least the second such challenge in the court.

  • June 09, 2022

    Fracking Operators Seek To Compel Leaseholders To Produce Documents

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Hydraulic fracturing companies on June 1 moved in Ohio federal court seeking to compel leaseholders with royalty rights to produce certain documents that pertain to the leases among the parties in a dispute over whether the fracking operators trespassed on the leaseholders’ property.

  • June 08, 2022

    Motion To Quash Third-Party Subpoena In Microcaptive Insurance Case Put On Hold

    SAN ANTONIO — In a June 7 text-only order, a federal judge in Texas granted the government’s motion to hold in abeyance a motion to quash a third-party subpoena served during discovery in a tax attorney’s suit fighting penalties assessed against her in connection with the establishment of microcaptive insurance companies.

  • June 08, 2022

    State Attorney-Client Privilege Law Does Not Apply In Water Damage Suit

    SEATTLE — A federal magistrate judge in Washington on May 26 declined to apply Washington law of attorney-client privilege and conduct an in camera review to determine whether an insurer has appropriately withheld certain documents based on attorney-client privilege in a builders risk insurance dispute over the insurer’s denial of claims related to damages sustained to two buildings under construction.

  • June 08, 2022

    Initial Settlement Approval, Seal Sought In Remanded IPO Securities Fraud Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — The plaintiffs in a securities fraud suit that was voluntarily removed from the U.S. Supreme Court’s docket after being granted certiorari for a question over a discovery stay in securities litigation filed a motion on June 2 to seal the “blow provision” within the proposed $2.75 million settlement of putative class claims under the Securities Act.