Mealey's Discovery

  • September 20, 2019

    6th Circuit:  Discovery Provision Applies To Foreign Commercial Arbitration Panel

    CINCINNATI — Applying the principles of Intel Corp. v. Advanced Micro Devices, Inc., the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 19 concluded in what it called a matter of first impression that a private commercial arbitration panel qualifies as a “tribunal” under U.S. Code Title 28 Section 1782(a), leading it to reverse a trial court’s denial of a Saudi company’s discovery requests from FedEx Corp. in an arbitration proceeding under the statute (In Re:  Application to Obtain Discovery for Use in Foreign Proceedings, No. 19-5315, 6th Cir.).

  • September 18, 2019

    Extra-Record Discovery Request Granted In Disability Dispute

    GREENBELT, Md. — A Maryland federal judge on Sept. 5 issued a letter order granting a disability claimant’s motion for extra-record discovery after determining that the claimant met her burden of establishing that the administrative record does not provide sufficient evidence to address her claim that the disability insurer’s termination of benefits was affected by a conflict of interest (Holly Chughtai v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., No. 19-848,  D. Md., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154304).

  • September 18, 2019

    Panel Upholds Denial Of Motion To Compel Insurer Based On Statutory Privilege

    NEW YORK — Wisconsin statutory privilege for the state’s insurance commissioner applies in a breach of contract case between an insurer formerly in rehabilitation and a mortgage financing services company, a New York appeals panel held Sept. 17, affirming the denial of a motion seeking to produce documents (Ambac Assurance Corp., et al. v. Nomura Credit & Capital Inc., et al., No. 9746 651359/13, N.Y. Sup., App. Div., 1st Dept., 2019 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 6582).

  • September 18, 2019

    New York Justice Denies Asbestos Plaintiff Access To Chanel No. 5 Formula

    NEW YORK — The relevancy of testing on historic samples of Chanel No. 5 and a woman’s expert’s admission that he could likely reverse engineer samples to determine authenticity warrant denying her motion to compel production of the product’s formula, a New York justice held in an opinion posted Sept. 12 (Beverley Alleyne v. A.O. Smith Water Products Co., et al., No. 190295/2017, N.Y. Sup., New York Co., 2019 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 4903).

  • September 17, 2019

    Rule 37(b) Sanctions Ordered In Bad Faith Suit Over Homeowners Insurance Claim

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Sanctions are warranted against an insured in a breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit brought pursuant to a homeowners insurance dispute because the insured made an intolerable “about-face” in first arguing that he was not seeking additional living expenses and then later stating during discovery that he, in fact, was seeking such damages, a federal judge in California ruled Sept. 13 (Edward Royce Stolz II v. Travelers Commercial Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-1923, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157096).

  • September 17, 2019

    Insurer Seeks To Compel Reinsurers To Produce Info On Allocation Of Settlement

    BOSTON — An insurer in a Sept. 13 motion asks a Massachusetts federal court to compel reinsurers to produce documents and interrogatory responses relating to their allocation and billing of its own 2009 settlement with an insured in a separate matter (Certain London Market Company Reinsurers v. Lamorak Insurance Co., No. 18-10534, D. Mass., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38909).

  • September 16, 2019

    Reuters Seeks To Unseal Propecia MDL Documents After Redacted Data Revealed

    BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Reuters news service on Sept. 12 asked a New York federal court overseeing the Propecia erectile dysfunction multidistrict litigation to unseal a motion in limine to exclude three plaintiff experts in an upcoming bellwether trial after an electronic glitch revealed redacted material (Paul Dawson v. Merck & Co., Inc., et al., No. 12-1876, E.D. N.Y.).

  • September 16, 2019

    4th Circuit Finds Court, Not Government, Should Review Privileged Materials

    RICHMOND, Va. — A Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 12 reversed a trial court’s denial of a law firm’s request that materials seized by government investigators be reviewed by a magistrate judge rather than the government’s filter team, with the panel setting guidelines to ensure that unrelated and privileged materials were protected (United States v. Under Seal, No. 19-1730, 4th Cir.).

  • September 16, 2019

    Chemours:  District Court Should Block C8 Plaintiffs From Conducting Depositions

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Chemours Co. on Sept. 9 filed a brief in Ohio federal court contending that it should grant the company’s motion for a protective order and prevent the plaintiffs in the multidistrict litigation related to perfluorooctanoic acid (known as C8) from deposing the company’s officers.  Chemours also says the court should quash the plaintiffs’ attempt to obtain documents (In re: E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. C8 Personal Injury Litigation, MDL No. 2433, No. 13-2433, S.D. Ohio).

  • September 12, 2019

    Judge Largely Grants Car Maker’s Request To Limit Asbestos Discovery

    TACOMA, Wash. — A car manufacturer need not respond to discovery beyond that called for under federal rules or that seeks overly broad answers about the company’s position on its vehicles, associated parts and consumer safety, a federal judge in Washington said Sept. 10 (Eric Klopman-Baerselman, et al. v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al., No. 18-5536, W.D. Wash., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154359).

  • September 11, 2019

    Some Google Images Discovery Ordered In Photo Repository’s Unfair Competition Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — In a Sept. 9 minute entry, issued after a hearing, a California federal judge directed Google LLC to provide some documents related to its “Google Images” feature to the operator of an online photo repository that sued the tech giant for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) related to an advertising and marketing agreement ( LLC v. Google LLC, et al., No. 3:18-cv-01910, N.D. Calif.).

  • September 10, 2019

    Insured Says Insurer’s Motion To Compel Is Moot In Hurricane Irma Coverage Suit

    MIAMI — In response to a federal flood insurer’s motion to compel discovery in a Hurricane Irma coverage dispute, the insured in an Aug. 27 response argues that the insurer’s motion is moot because it has already provided the requested documents without the need for judicial intervention (Island Club Condominium Inc. v. Wright National Flood Insurance Co., No. 18-10303, S.D. Fla.).

  • September 10, 2019

    Judge: Window Franchisor’s Document Claw-Back Requests Were Untimely, Improper

    WILKESBORO, N.C. — A North Carolina judge on Aug. 23 released a redacted version of a ruling in which he found that a window franchisor engaged in numerous discovery infractions, notably repeated requests to claw back submitted documents, leading the judge to mostly grant motions by a group of franchisee plaintiffs to compel and to find asserted privileges waived in a lawsuit over alleged fraud and breach of contract related to their franchise agreements (Window World of Baton Rouge LLC, et al. v. Window World Inc., et al., Nos. 15 CVS 1 & 15 CVS 2, N.C. Super., Wilkes Co., 2019 NCBC LEXIS 54).

  • September 10, 2019

    Rimini Street Again Told To Provide Oracle Post-Injunction Compliance Discovery

    LAS VEGAS — Five months after Oracle USA Inc. was permitted to conduct limited discovery to ensure that Rimini Street Inc. was complying with a permanent injunction against it in a long-running software copyright lawsuit, a Nevada federal magistrate judge on Sept. 6 signed an order setting parameters on that discovery and establishing a schedule for Rimini’s compliance (Oracle USA Inc., et al. v. Rimini Street Inc., et al., No. 2:10-cv-00106, D. Nev.).

  • September 06, 2019

    Monsanto Wants Blood Sample For Genetic Test In Mesothelioma Case

    EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. — Monsanto Co. on Aug. 30 asked an Illinois judge court to compel testing of an asbestos plaintiff’s blood, saying the procedure may reveal a genetic component to the 36-year-old’s peritoneal mesothelioma (Dustin W. Holsten, et al. v. Amalgamated Sugar Co. LLC, et al., No. 18-L-1664, Ill. Cir., Madison Co.).

  • September 05, 2019

    Wisconsin Judge Says Discovery Cannot Proceed On Bad Faith Claim

    MILWAUKEE — A Wisconsin federal judge on Aug. 30 granted a homeowners insurer’s motion for a protective order precluding an insured from engaging in discovery on a bad faith claim because the insured failed to provide sufficient facts in support of a breach of contract claim as required under Wisconsin law for discovery to proceed on the bad faith claim (Cody Christopherson v. American Strategic Insurance Corp., No. 19-202, E.D. Wis., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148323).

  • September 05, 2019

    Judge Denies Mandamus In Dispute Over Fracking At Former Nuclear Site

    DENVER — A federal judge in Colorado on Sept. 4 denied a petition for a writ of mandamus sought by residents, environmental organizations and nuclear workers advocacy groups that wanted to order the U.S. government to provide records that pertain to a grand jury that investigated the actions of Rockwell International Corp. at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) former weapons-grade plutonium-239 processing facility, Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, which is now being considered as a site for hydraulic fracturing operations.  The judge ruled that the petitioners did not cite any legal authority for the proposition that they are entitled to the business records they seek (Alliance of Nuclear Workers Advocacy Groups, et al. v. United States, No. 19-76, D. Colo.).

  • September 04, 2019

    Judge Bars Former CEO From Depositions In Health Care Coverage Spat

    SAN ANTONIO — A former executive for bankrupt medical providers may not attend depositions related to an insurer’s cross-claim alleging that the companies operated a scheme designed to increase billing rates, a federal magistrate judge in Texas held Aug. 30 (Neil Gilmour III, et al. v. Aetna Health Inc., et al., No. 17-510, W.D. Texas, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148232).

  • September 04, 2019

    Relator Can Probe Disclosures Made To Government In Heart Device Case, Judge Rules

    MINNEAPOLIS — A Minnesota federal judge on Aug. 28 overruled objections by medical device maker Boston Scientific Corp. to a magistrate judge’s recommendation that the company be compelled to produce presentations the company made to the United States while the government investigated a whistleblower’s allegations about the alleged sales of defective heart devices and the payment of kickbacks to cardiologists (United States of America, et al., ex rel. Steven Higgins v. Boston Scientific Corp., No. 11-2453, D. Minn., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 146498).

  • September 03, 2019

    California Governor Signs Bill Capping Mesothelioma Depositions

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — With limited exceptions, California law now limits defendants deposing mesothelioma sufferers to seven hours of testimony after California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the legislation on Aug. 30.

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