FRESNO, Calif. — Five absent class members who were previously issued subpoenas and failed to appear for depositions in a lawsuit over wages for agricultural workers must appear for depositions or face preclusion of their declarations in support of class certification, a federal magistrate judge in California ruled June 22, declining the employers’ request to strike the declarations of all absent class members.
ATLANTA — A trial court abused its discretion when it limited discovery sought by a former employee suing for disability discrimination and denied multiple requests to compel the deposition of the then-executive vice president of human resources, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled June 21, vacating the summary judgment ruling for the employer, reversing the denial of the former employee’s motion to compel the deposition and remanding with instructions that the district court permit the deposition to take place.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Two companies tell the U.S. Supreme Court in June 21 response briefs that a dispute over the applicability of a federal statute allowing discovery in aid of foreign courts and tribunals to private commercial tribunals is moot because the underlying arbitration’s hearing concluded in May and say that applying the statute to private tribunals would destabilize foreign and domestic arbitrations.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Chapter 11 debtor DBMP LLC’s request to send questionnaires to about 4,000 mesothelioma sufferers with claims pending against the company in an attempt to estimate its asbestos liability suffers from several fatal defects, including that the discovery would be “unduly burdensome and harassing,” a committee of asbestos claimants says in a June 11 objection to the motion in North Carolina federal bankruptcy court.
GREENSBORO, N.C. — A North Carolina federal magistrate judge on June 17 determined that a dissolved insured is required to produce only limited portions of a settlement agreement with one of its insurers for underlying asbestos bodily injury claims because the insurer seeking production of the settlement failed to show that the entire agreement is relevant.
BOSTON — A Massachusetts federal judge on June 18 declined to adjourn an Austrian company’s action to enforce a roughly 142 million euro award against a Taiwanese company for a pharmaceuticals contract dispute despite a pending set-aside proceeding in Germany and said the Austrian company may seek limited jurisdictional discovery regarding whether the Taiwanese company is operated from Massachusetts.
SAVANNAH, Ga. — Finding “good cause shown,” a federal magistrate judge in Georgia on June 1 granted a consent motion to stay and extend discovery in a commercial auto insurer’s lawsuit seeking a declaration that there is no coverage for the insured, its owners and an employee for an underlying $112,466.57 personal injury default judgment.
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. — A federal magistrate judge in Illinois on June 11 ruled that although more severe sanctions are not warranted against an insured that has failed to comply with court orders compelling discovery in an insurance fraud dispute, requiring the insured to pay for all reasonable costs and expenses associated with taking his deposition in the action is appropriate.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on June 7 granted a motion to delay distribution of a petition for certiorari in a dispute over when a third party may oppose a discovery subpoena served on a disinterested party, scheduling distribution for June 16 in response to the petitioner’s concern that it would not have sufficient time to file a reply brief.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Court of Appeals on June 11 ordered opioid defendants Endo Health Solutions Inc. and Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. (collectively Endo) to show cause why the court should not dismiss their appeal of a discovery sanctions order because the trial court’s action is not a final action that awarded amounts.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Arkansas Supreme Court on June 10 said it lacked jurisdiction over Arkansas’ appeal of a trial court order that the state attorney general drop its opioids claims on behalf of five state agencies or face dismissal of the complaint.
ALEXANDRIA, La. — Saying that he was unable at this stage to determine as a matter of law that each of the Plaintiff’s claims relate to “‘the administration or the use by an individual of a covered countermeasure’” under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act, a Louisiana federal judge on April 30 denied a motion to dismiss a resident’s suit alleging that the facility was negligent in connection with her contracting COVID-19, ordering limited discovery on whether the PREP Act encompasses the claims.
BATON ROUGE, La. — A federal magistrate judge in Louisiana on June 7 granted in part and denied in part a plaintiff’s motion to compel production, compelling the deposition of a homeowners insurer’s claims manager but denying the insured’s motion to compel production of documents involving the insurer’s employee in a bad faith lawsuit arising from storm damage.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a June 7 reply brief supporting their petition for certiorari, Dell Technologies Inc., a subsidiary and other parties that were sued for securities violations related to the subsidiary’s initial public offering (IPO) ask the U.S. Supreme Court to find that a discovery stay provision in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (Reform Act) applies to securities lawsuits filed in state courts and not just in federal courts, as California trial and appeals courts have found.
BOSTON — The French version of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) does not prevent a point of sale (POS) technology firm and a production partner from seeking discovery of important documents from a French rival in a dispute over trade secrets and patents, a Massachusetts federal judge ruled June 3, granting the plaintiffs’ motion to reconsider a previous ruling that had ordered discovery only from two domestic plaintiffs.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A federal judge in North Carolina on June 2 declined to dismiss a borrower’s claims against her mortgage lender stemming from its alleged placement of an escrow account on the borrower’s mortgage and the lender’s alleged charging of fees that the borrower did not approve.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Three formal tribal executives accused of embezzling millions of dollars from the tribe lost their Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination when they entered guilty pleas to criminal charges, so they must respond to the tribe’s discovery request in its civil racketeering suit against the trio, a California federal judge said June 2 in granting the tribe’s motion to compel.
WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware federal judge on June 1 quashed subpoenas from Chapter 11 debtor Bestwall LLC seeking claimant information from asbestos trusts so it can estimate its own asbestos liability but allowed Bestwall to reissue the subpoenas with stronger protections for the claimants’ personal information.
CHARLESTON, S.C. — A federal judge in South Carolina on May 27 ordered an insurer to turn over its reserve file in an insurance bad faith lawsuit stemming from a refusal to pay full benefit coverage for injuries an insured sustained in an automobile accident with an underinsured at-fault driver, ruling that the reserve file is both relevant and proportional to the needs of the lawsuit.
NEWARK, N.J. — A New Jersey federal judge on May 26 affirmed a magistrate judge’s ruling that an insured is not required to produce certain information related to the settlement of an underlying asbestos injury lawsuit because the information sought by the insurers is protected by the attorney-client privilege.