District Court in Colorado Orders GM to Produce FEM Data in Roof Crush Case

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Pertile, a front seat passenger, was badly injured in a rollover. GM’s expert, Ms. Lu, issued a report which states that the roof structure was evaluated in tests that subjected the design to various collision speeds, impact directions and loading directions, and opined, in part based upon her “review of the technical reports and engineering documents” that the 2011 Chevrolet …

Federal District Court in New York Applies Adverse Inference Where Defendant’s (Non-Party) Consultant Backs Up Cell Photos, But Not Text Messages, After Action Commenced

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In a dispute between the heirs and survivors of the band Lynyrd Skynard against a production company seeking to make an unauthorized documentary with the aid of a former bandmember, a District Court Judge in the Southern District of New York applied an adverse inference to the text messages of the scriptwriter, who purchased a new phone after the commencement …

Magistrate Judge Limits Discovery of E-Mails and Text Messages to Those Directly Relevant to Employment Claims on Proportionality Grounds

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In suit brought by a former State employee for retaliation, invasion of privacy, and defamation, U.S. Magistrate Judge Erin Wilder-Doomes, in the Middle District of Louisiana, granted in part, and denied in part, the defendant employer’s motion to compel various e-mail and text messages. With respect to requests for plaintiff’s e-mails and text messages from his own personal cell phone …

U.S. Supreme Court Reverses $2.7 Million Discovery Sanction Against GM Where Not Causally Related to the Misconduct

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Plaintiffs sued Goodyear, alleging that the failure of a G159 tire caused the family’s motorhome to swerve off the road and flip over. After several years of contentious discovery, marked by Goodyear’s slow response to repeated requests for internal G159 test results, the parties settled the case. Some months later, the plaintiffs’ lawyer learned that, in another lawsuit involving the …

District Court Judge in Northern District of Ohio Compels Defendant to Write Computer Program to Extract Relevant Information

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Plaintiff filed putative class action alleging violations of the TCPA.  Specifically, Meredith Plaintiff asserts that Defendant’s practice of using autodialed, prerecorded-voice collection calls using contact information obtained from its clients or third-party skip-trace services foreseeably results in Defendant making numerous wrong number calls to the cell phones of people other than the debtor. Previously, the Court ruled on Plaintiff’s motion …

Magistrate Judge in the Northern District of Indiana Declines to Compel Re-Production of Non-Compliant Electronic Data in Light of Proportionality Considerations

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Addressing the issue of whether electronically-stored information had been produced in compliance with Rule 34, Magistrate Judge Gotsch noted that: “To show that it produced documents as they were kept in the ordinary course of business, a producing party cannot simply assert that the format of its production comports with its usual business practices. A producing party must also show …

Plaintiff’s Social Media History is Discoverable, but with Limitations

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Defendant in a personal injury case sought the plaintiff’s social media history.  While the plaintiff technically waived her objections to the discovery requests by failing to serve them within thirty days, Magistrate Judge Erin Wilder-Doomes, sitting in the Middle District of Louisiana, nevertheless limited them as overbroad: “As Defendant points out, social media is generally discoverable. However, a request for …

Seventh Circuit Says Wife’s Unauthorized Access to Husband’s E-Mails Could Violate Federal Wiretap Act

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A husband embroiled in an acrimonious divorce brought suit against his wife claiming a violation of the Electronic Surveillance Act by surreptitiously placing an auto-forwarding “rule” on his e-mail accounts that automatically forwarded the messages on his e-mail to her. He also alleges that the wife’s divorce attorney violated the Act by “disclosing” the intercepted emails in response to his …

Louisiana Fourth Circuit Reverses Summary Judgment on Intentional Spoliation Claim

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In summary: “The trial court found Ms. Fiveash failed to present any evidence to establish that Defendants intentionally destroyed evidence with the purpose of depriving her of its use at trial. Louisiana jurisprudence has held summary judgment based on subjective facts like intent is rarely appropriate. The trial court incorrectly relied on self-serving and conclusory affidavits that Defendants offered in …

Magistrate Judge in the Middle District of Louisiana Discusses Limitations on Discovery of Social Media

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“Movants are seeking relevant information posted on social media directly pertaining to Plaintiff’s claims in the Petition. Such social media is generally discoverable…. “The issue here is whether Plaintiff shared relevant information to the claims and defenses in this action with third parties. Regardless of whether Plaintiff emplaced privacy settings on her social media postings, these postings were freely shared …