Mealey's Discovery

  • December 8, 2017

    DACA Supporters Oppose Government’s High Court Petition To Stay Discovery Order

    WASHINGTON, D.C.  — Several U.S. states and other parties opposing the repeal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program filed briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court Dec. 6, arguing against the federal government’s petition for mandamus  to halt an order requiring discovery of purported privileged deliberative documents (In re United States, et al., No. 17-801, U.S. Sup.).

  • December 7, 2017

    Halliburton Must Provide Information In Groundwater Case, Plaintiffs Say

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Residents who argue that Halliburton Energy Services Inc. (HESI) is liable for contaminating their drinking water supply with perchlorate on Dec. 6 filed a brief in an Oklahoma federal court contending that HESI should be compelled to produce documents and other information (Albin Family Revocable Living Trust, et al. v. Halliburton Energy Services Inc., No. 16-910, W.D. Okla.).

  • December 7, 2017

    Court: Company Must Produce Evidence It Proffered For Asbestos Plaintiff’s Review

    SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A judge properly ordered a boiler company to produce more than 5,000 index cards after the company voluntarily permitted inspection by an asbestos plaintiff, an Illinois appeals court held Dec. 5 (Larry Salvatore Sr., et al. v. Cleaver-Brooks, et al., No. 4-17-0173, Ill. App., 4th Dist.).

  • December 7, 2017

    Magistrate Judge Extends Discovery In Reinsurance Case Over Promissory Note

    LINCOLN, Neb. — A Nebraska federal magistrate judge on Nov. 30 extended the discovery deadline by one month in a dispute over whether a reinsurer owes an insured $152,616.35 under a promissory note executed pursuant to a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) (Applied Underwriters Inc. v. Top’s Personnel Inc., No. 15-90, D. Neb.).

  • December 7, 2017

    Judge Enjoins Insureds From Removing Any Property From Storage Unit In Sandy Suit

    BROOKLYN, N.Y. — A New York federal judge on Nov. 6 confirmed that an Oct. 23 court-ordered subpoena remains in effect to make a storage space in Brooklyn, N.Y., available to allow the inspection of the contents of several storage units maintained by insureds in a Superstorm Sandy coverage dispute and enjoined the insureds from removing any boxes or property from the storage units absent permission form the court (Robert Toussie v. Allstate Insurance Co., et al., Nos. 14-2705 and 15-5235, E.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 183603).

  • December 6, 2017

    New Jersey Panel OKs Discovery Of Employee Files Without In Camera Review

    TRENTON, N.J. — In light of an existing protective order, a New Jersey appeals panel on Nov. 22 found no error in a trial court’s order compelling production of employee records in a wrongful discharge case without first reviewing them in camera, ruling that the protection of such privacy concerns are determined on a case-by-case basis (Louis Narvaez v. New Jersey Judiciary, Vicinage 4, No. A-3166-16T1, N.J. Super., App. Div., 2017 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2920).

  • December 6, 2017

    Judge Allows Subpoena Of Insurer’s Consultants In Windstorm Coverage Dispute

    SEATTLE — Finding insufficient support for an insurer’s claim that its consultants were engaged in advance of possible insurance fraud litigation, a Washington federal judge on Dec. 5 denied the insurer’s motion to quash subpoenas served on them by the plaintiff in a coverage suit related to extreme weather events (Premier Harvest LLC, et al. v. AXIS Surplus Insurance Co., et al., No. 2:17-cv-00784, W.D. Wash., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 199910).

  • December 5, 2017

    BNSF Ordered To Produce Documents, Designee In Amtrak Derailment Suit

    KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Railroad track owner BNSF Railway Co. was directed Dec. 1 to provide certain records and corporate designee depositions by a Kansas federal magistrate judge who mostly granted a motion to compel by passengers intervening in a suit over a National Railroad Passenger Corp. (Amtrak) train derailment, with the magistrate deeming most of the requested discovery relevant to negligence claims, while limiting the scope of requests found to be overbroad (National Railroad Passenger Corp., et al. v. Cimarron Crossing Feeders LLC No. 6:16-cv-01094, D. Kan., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 197572).

  • December 5, 2017

    Document Production Ordered In Subrogation Suit Over Fire Caused By Water Heater

    WICHITA, Kan. — A Kansas federal magistrate judge on Dec. 1 mostly granted motions to compel by a homeowners insurer and a water heater manufacturer, finding the parties’ requested documents to be relevant to the product liability claims, related to a fire-causing water heater, and mostly nonprivileged and discoverable (The Travelers Home and Marine Insurance Co. v. HTP Inc., et al., No. 6:15-cv-01371, D. Kan., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 198064).

  • December 5, 2017

    Judge Permits Government To Conduct Broad Search Of Email Addresses

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — An Alabama federal judge on Dec. 1 granted the U.S. government’s motion to reconsider limitations that were previously imposed on search methods to be used with certain email accounts, with the judge concluding that the specifics of the case require flexibility with the usual particularity requirements for warrants required by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (In re Search of Information Associated with 15 Email Addresses Stored at Premises Owned, Maintained, Controlled or Operated by 1&1 Media, Inc., et al., No. 2:17-cm-03152, M.D. Ala.).

  • December 4, 2017

    Government Seeks Mandamus Of DACA Discovery Order From Supreme Court

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — After the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals denied its petition for mandamus of a trial court’s order requiring an expanded administrative record in a lawsuit seeking to block termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the U.S. government on Dec. 1 filed a similar petition with the U.S. Supreme Court, seeking to halt the discovery of what it asserts are privileged deliberative documents (In re United States, et al., No. 17-801, U.S. Sup.).

  • December 1, 2017

    Judge Denies Extension On Discovery Of Class Policies In Reinsurance Fraud Scheme

    BALTIMORE — A Maryland federal judge on Nov. 29 denied a request to extend the relevant time period for discovery as to 11 class policies experiencing an 2015 cost of insurance (COI) increase in a dispute over an alleged life insurance fraud scheme that shifted debt to reinsurers (Richard Dickman, et al. v. Banner Life Insurance Co., No. 16-192, D. Md.).

  • December 1, 2017

    Discovery In Benzene Case Should Be Reopened, Man Says; More Witnesses Exist

    ASHEVILLE, N.C. — A North Carolina man who contends that a company is liable for contaminating his groundwater with benzene on Nov. 27 filed a brief in North Carolina federal court seeking to reopen discovery on grounds that there is evidence that was “in large part” available during discovery in the form of witness testimony the defendants failed to pursue (Kent Stahle v. CTS Corporation, No. 14-48, W.D. N.C.).

  • November 30, 2017

    Federal Judge Grants Discovery Extension In Fraudulent Transfers Suit

    ATLANTA — In a dispute over alleged fraudulent transfers of reinsurance funds, a Georgia federal judge on Nov. 21 granted in part a request to extend discovery for two additional months “only to follow up on existing issues” but said no new discovery is to occur (Canal Insurance Co., et al. v. Golden Isles Reinsurance Company Ltd., et al., No. 15-03331, N.D. Ga.).

  • November 28, 2017

    Disability Income Insurer Must Produce Documents Pertaining To Claims Decision

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Following an in camera review, an Ohio federal magistrate judge on Nov.  27 granted an insured’s motion to compel the production of seven documents after determining that the documents will help to determine whether the insurer acted in bad faith in its handling of the insured’s disability income claim (Mukesh R. Shah, M.D. v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., et al., No.  16-1124, S.D. Ohio, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 194347).

  • November 28, 2017

    Discovery Outside Of Administrative Record Is Not Warranted, Judge Says

    BALTIMORE — A disability claimant is not permitted to conduct discovery outside of the administrative record because the claimant failed to identify any specific need for extra-record discovery, a Maryland federal judge said Nov. 16 (Amy Silverstone v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Co., No. 17-0111, D. Md., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189528).

  • November 28, 2017

    Plaintiffs Seek Extension On Discovery Of Class Policies In Reinsurance Fraud Scheme

    BALTIMORE — In an alleged life insurance fraud scheme that shifted debt to reinsurers, a class of plaintiffs on Nov. 21 asked a Maryland federal court to extend the relevant time period for discovery as to 11 class policies experiencing an 2015 cost of insurance (COI) increase (Richard Dickman, et al. v. Banner Life Insurance Co., No. 16-192, D. Md.).

  • November 28, 2017

    Companies: Lead Paint Expert Should Be Excluded Due To Missing Discovery Deadline

    MILWAUKEE — Three of the companies being sued by plaintiffs who contend that they are liable for lead-paint poisoning on Nov. 15 moved to exclude one of the plaintiffs’ experts, contending that his opinions were submitted past the deadline for expert disclosures and after the close of discovery (Glenn Burton v. American Cyanamid, et al., No. 07-0303, E.D. Wis.).

  • November 22, 2017

    9th Circuit Denies Discovery Stay In DACA Suit, Defers To Trial Court

    PASADENA, Calif. — After denying mandamus to the U.S. government from a trial court’s order requiring an expanded administrative record in a lawsuit seeking to block the termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Nov. 21 denied the government’s motion for an emergency stay of discovery, ruling that it lacked authority to consider the motion (In re United States, et al., No.17-72917, 9th Cir.).

  • November 21, 2017

    Magistrate Orders Hospital To Produce Asbestos Pathology Information For Testing

    GREENVILLE, N.C. — A hospital must produce additional lung pathology materials in its possession for testing by an asbestos defendant, a federal magistrate judge in North Carolina held Nov. 3 (Faye Gore v. 3M Co., et al., No. 16-716, E.D. N.C.).