Mealey's Discovery

  • October 23, 2020

    Judge Refuses To Phase Discovery In Wells Fargo Discriminatory Lending Suit

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 9 denied Wells Fargo & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank NA’s motion to phase discovery in a suit brought by the city of Sacramento accusing the lender of engaging in discriminatory lending practices, holding that limiting discovery to loans offered during the limitations period could not provide enough statistical data to support the city’s allegations of disparate impact (Sacramento v. Wells Fargo Bank & Co., No. 18-416, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188259).

  • October 22, 2020

    Federal Judge:  StarKist’s Attempt To Halt Class Certification Is Premature

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on Oct. 19 denied a food company’s motion to deny class certification in a lawsuit alleging violations of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) and other consumer protection laws in connection with promises of its tuna being dolphin-safe and sustainably sourced, writing that the request, filed before the completion of discovery, is premature (Warren Gardner, et al. v. StarKist Co., No. 19-2561, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 194519).

  • October 21, 2020

    Company’s Expedited Discovery Request In Trade Secrets Suit Denied

    RALEIGH, N.C. — A bioanalytical lab that specializes in large molecule bioanalysis has failed to show good cause why its request for expedited discovery in a breach of contract and trade secret misappropriation lawsuit should be granted, a North Carolina state court judge ruled Oct. 19 in denying the request (BioAgilytix Labs LLC, et al. v. Safa Alvandkouhi, et al., No. 20 CVS 10501, N.C. Super., Wake Co., 2020 NCBC LEXIS 125).

  • October 20, 2020

    Singapore Judge: Investment-Treaty Arbitration Not Exempt From Confidentiality Law

    SINGAPORE — A Singapore High Court judge, addressing what is “arguably a novel question of Singapore law,” on Oct. 8 declined the Republic of India’s request for a declaratory judgment that Singapore’s confidentiality laws do not apply to investment-treaty arbitration documents such as those India sought to share with a Dutch tribunal, writing that such relief is not “necessary or justified in the circumstances of this case” and ordering India to pay the costs of the proceeding (Republic of India v. Vedanta Resources PLC, No. [2020] SGHC 208, Singapore High).

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge: Oil Company May Seek Discovery For Foreign Cases Involving Nigerian License

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware federal judge on Oct. 15 granted an Italian oil company’s ex parte application to issue “narrowly tailored” subpoenas to seven Delaware entities regarding their ownership, relationships and financial arrangements with the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN) for use in two Italian suits and a pending International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) arbitration between the company and Nigeria regarding a contested oil prospecting license (In Re Ex Parte Application Of Eni S.p.A., No. 20-mc-334, D. Del.).

  • October 19, 2020

    Chicago’s Discovery Responses Recommended In Marriott Data Breach Suit

    GREENBELT, Md. — A Maryland federal judge on Oct. 14 recommended that Chicago be ordered to provide responses to interrogatories and requests for production (RFPs) served by Marriott International Inc. in a consolidated lawsuit brought by the city and other plaintiffs over a massive data breach experienced by the hotel chain (In re:  Marriott International Inc. Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 8:19-md-02879, D. Md.).

  • October 16, 2020

    Facebook Seeks Dismissal Of U.K. Plaintiffs, Discovery Limits In User Profile Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — Two newly added plaintiffs from the United Kingdom should be dismissed from the consolidated lawsuit over the sharing of social network users’ profile data with third parties, Facebook Inc. argues in an Oct. 13 reply brief, telling a California federal court that applicable forum selection clauses preclude inclusion of the foreign plaintiffs in the putative class action (In re Facebook Inc., Consumer Privacy User Profile Litigation, No. 18-md-2843, N.D. Calif.).

  • October 16, 2020

    Opioids MDL Judge Sanctions Teva, Allergan For Not Finding Drug Order Report

    CLEVELAND — The Ohio federal judge overseeing the opioids multidistrict litigation on Oct. 14 sanctioned defendants Allergan Finance LLC and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. for discovery violations by failing to find a suspicious drug order report Allergan had commissioned before Teva bought the latter’s generic opioid business (In Re:  National Prescription Opiate Litigation, MLD Docket No. 2804, No. 17-md-2804, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Div.).

  • October 14, 2020

    Magistrate Judge Compels Discovery Over Allocation For Reinsurance Billings

    BOSTON — A federal magistrate judge in Massachusetts on Oct. 13 compelled in part an insurer to provide certain information in a privilege log on how it allocated a $120 million settlement of environmental claims for purposes of its reinsurance billings (Certain London Market Company Reinsurers v. Lamorak Insurance Co., No. 18-10534, D. Mass., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189115).

  • October 14, 2020

    Entry In Insurer’s Claims Notes Does Not Have To Be Produced, Judge Says

    PHOENIX — An entry in an insurer’s redacted claims notes pertaining to underlying construction defects lawsuits does not have to be produced because the entry is protected by the attorney-client privilege as it pertains to legal advice and not an adjustment of the claim, an Arizona federal judge said Sept. 30 in partially granting the insurer’s motion for reconsideration (Centex Homes, et al. v. NGM Insurance Co., No. 19-1392, D. Ariz., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 181204).

  • October 14, 2020

    Judge: Laboratory’s Delayed Production Of Privilege Log Should Result In Waiver

    ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — A federal judge in Missouri on Sept. 24 found that a medical laboratory and two of its directors accused of submitting fraudulent bills to insurers should have to produce the 1,200 documents listed as protected from disclosure by the attorney-client privilege as a sanction for their unjustified production of a privilege log four months after the close of discovery (RightCHOICE Managed Care Inc., et al. v. Hospital Partners Inc., et al., No. 18-6037, W.D. Mo., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 175977).

  • October 14, 2020

    Interested Parties’ Request For Discovery From Hospital, Owner Denied By Judge

    ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — A motion to intervene filed by plaintiffs in a securities derivatives suit seeking unfiled discovery from a hospital and its owner accused by a number of insurance companies of submitting fraudulent claims for laboratory testing was denied Sept. 24 by a federal judge in Missouri after the judge found that the interested parties lacked standing (RightCHOICE Managed Care Inc., et al. v. Hospital Partners Inc., et al., No. 18-6037, W.D. Mo., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 175980).

  • October 13, 2020

    South Carolina Judge Sanctions Insurer Over Corporate Deposition Failures

    COLUMBIA, S.C.  — An insurer accused of being the alter ego of a defunct company hit with a $32.7 million verdict must produce its redacted mesothelioma tracking database and written responses to unanswered deposition questions asked of its corporate representative, a South Carolina judge said while imposing sanctions during a Sept. 10 hearing (Ann Finch v. Sentry Casualty Co., et al., No. 2019-CP-40-03003, S.C. Comm. Pls., Richland Co.).

  • October 12, 2020

    Nonparty Samsung Must Produce Some App Store Documents In Apple Antitrust Suit

    OAKLAND, Calif. — Apple Inc. sufficiently established the relevancy and a substantial need for certain documents from rival company Samsung Electronics America Inc. to defend against claims that it has monopolized the marketplace for iPhone apps, a California federal magistrate judge ruled Oct. 9, granting in part Apple’s motion to compel the production of documents that relate to the smartphone app marketplace in response to a subpoena served on the company, which is not a party to the lawsuit (In re:  Apple iPhone Antitrust Litigation, No. 11-6714, N.D. Calif.).

  • October 12, 2020

    6th Circuit: No Mandamus Order To Block Additional Drug Data Discovery

    CINCINNATI — The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 8 denied a mandamus petition by the Ohio Board of Pharmacy (OBOP) to order the opioids multidistrict litigation court to rescind its order to provide the names and addresses of opioid prescribers and dispensers to retail pharmacies in an upcoming bellwether trial (In Re:  National Prescription Opiate Litigation [In Re:  State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy], No. 20-3875, 6th Cir.).

  • October 12, 2020

    Maine High Court Finds Nonparty, Redacted Patient Records Not Discoverable

    PORTLAND, Maine— Concluding that state evidentiary law protecting the confidentiality of patient records applies equally to redacted and unredacted records, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court on Sept. 29 reversed a trial court’s order compelling the production of the redacted records of nonparty patients who underwent similar surgical procedures as one at issue in a malpractice suit against a hospital (Estate of Carol A. Kennelly v.  Mid Coast Hospital, No. Cum-18-445, Maine Sup., 2020 Me. LEXIS 118).

  • October 12, 2020

    Judge Grants Insurer’s Motion For Protective Order In Hurricane Matthew Dispute

    RALEIGH, N.C. — A federal judge in North Carolina on Oct. 8 granted an insurer’s motion for a protective order and denied without prejudice the insured’s motions for partial summary judgment and to compel certain discovery in a coverage dispute over the insured’s tobacco product losses caused by Hurricane Matthew (U.S. Tobacco Cooperative, Inc. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's, No. 19-430, E.D. N.C., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 186908).

  • October 09, 2020

    Magistrate Grants Complex Owner’s Motion To Strike Supplemental Expert Disclosure

    EASTERN HATTIESBURG, Miss. — A federal magistrate judge in Mississippi on Oct. 8 granted an apartment complex owner’s motion to strike a supplemental expert disclosure submitted by the builder, finding that the submission was untimely and that an expert’s opinion on continued deterioration was not a “new opinion” because the parties acknowledged that the building would continue to incur damages if water intrusion from construction defects was allowed to continue (Cross Creek Multifamily LLC v. ICI Construction Inc., et al., No. 18-cv-83, S.D. Miss., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 186717).

  • October 09, 2020

    Supreme Court Declines To Hear Attorney’s Questions About Preremoval Discovery

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Maryland attorney’s questions about federal removal statutes related to discovery requests made prior to a state court lawsuit’s removal to federal court will go unanswered by the U.S. Supreme Court, which denied his petition for certiorari on Oct. 5 (Jason Edward Rheinstein v.  Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland, No.  20-123, U.S. Sup., 2020 U.S. LEXIS 4049).

  • October 08, 2020

    Panel Reverses Dismissal Of Discovery Complaint Over Potential Negligence Claims

    BOSTON — An assisted living facility resident was entitled to pursue a complaint for discovery to explore the viability of potential negligence claims over a fall that she experienced, a Massachusetts appellate panel ruled Oct. 5, reversing a lower court’s dismissal and deeming the matter not moot under the statute of limitations or in light of the resident’s subsequent death (Kenneth F. Atchue v. Benchmark Senior Living LLC, et al., No. 19-P-125, Mass App., 2020 Mass. App. LEXIS 153).