Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Gramercy Group, Inc. v. D.A. Builders, LLC

United States District Court, D. Hawaii

November 9, 2017

GRAMERCY GROUP, INC., Plaintiff,
v.
D.A. BUILDERS, LLC aka D.A. BUILDERS; DAVID A. ALCOS III; JOHN DOES 1-20; JANE DOES 1-10; DOE CORPORATIONS 1-10; DOE PARTNERSHIPS 1-10; OTHER ENTITIES 1-10, Defendants.

          ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER

          Kevin S.C. Chang United States Magistrate Judge

         Before the Court is Plaintiff's Motion for Protective Order, filed September 28, 2017, which seeks to preclude the deposition of its counsel Marie Ann Hoenings. After careful consideration of the parties' submissions, counsel's arguments, and the applicable law, the Court HEREBY DENIES the Motion for the reasons set forth below.

         BACKGROUND

         As the Court and the parties are well acquainted with the factual history of this case, the Court includes only those facts relevant to the disposition of the instant Motion.

         On February 19, 2016, prior to the commencement of this action, Plaintiff proposed an Amendment to Subcontract and General Release (“Proposed Amendment”) to Defendant D.A. Builders. In support of Plaintiff's pending motions for summary judgment (“MSJs”), both Vincent Parziale, Plaintiff's President/CEO, and Hoenings submitted multiple declarations that include representations about the Proposed Amendment.

         On September 8, 2017, defense counsel informed Plaintiff's counsel that they intended to notice Hoenings' deposition. Plaintiff responded that it would not produce her for a deposition. Defendants noticed Hoenings' deposition, but following the conferral process, they continued the deposition date pending the adjudication of this Motion.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (“FRCP”) 26 provides:

Parties may obtain discovery regarding any nonprivileged matter that is relevant to any party's claim or defense and proportional to the needs of the case, considering the importance of the issues at stake in the action, the amount in controversy, the parties' relative access to relevant information, the parties' resources, the importance of the discovery in resolving the issues, and whether the burden or expense of the proposed discovery outweighs its likely benefit. Information within this scope of discovery need not be admissible in evidence to be discoverable.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1). Relevance “has been construed broadly to encompass any matter that bears on, or that reasonably could lead to other matter that could bear on, any issue that is or may be in the case.” Oppenheimer Fund, Inc. v. Sanders, 437 U.S. 340, 351 (1978). At the same time, it has its “ultimate and necessary boundaries.” Id. “District courts have broad discretion in determining relevancy for discovery purposes.” Surfvivor Media, Inc. v. Survivor Prods., 406 F.3d 625, 635 (9th Cir. 2005) (citing Hallett v. Morgan, 296 F.3d 732, 751 (9th Cir. 2002)).

         The 2015 amendment to FRCP 26 added proportionality as a requirement for obtaining discovery. Thus, “relevancy alone is no longer sufficient to obtain discovery, the discovery requested must also be proportional to the needs of the case.” Centeno v. City of Fresno, Case No. 1:16-cv-00653-DAD-SAB, 2016 WL 7491634, at *4 (E.D. Cal. Dec. 29, 2016) (citing In re Bard IVC Filters Prod. Liab. Litig., 317 F.R.D. 562, 564 (D. Ariz. 2016)). Addressing all proportionality considerations does not rest solely with the party seeking discovery. Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b)(1) advisory committee's note to 2015 amendment. Instead, “[t]he parties and the court have a collective responsibility to consider the proportionality of all discovery and consider it in resolving discovery disputes.” Id.

         Courts may terminate or limit the manner and scope of a deposition, for good cause, “to protect a party or person from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, or undue burden or expense.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(c)(1). If the Court denies the motion for protective order in whole or in part, “the court may, on just terms, order that any party or person provide or permit discovery.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(c)(2).

         Generally, the party seeking the protective order has the heavy burden of demonstrating that “good cause” exists for the protection of the materials. Rivera v. NIBCO, Inc., 384 F.3d 822, 827 (9th Cir. 2004) (citation omitted). “‘Good cause' is established where it is specifically demonstrated that disclosure will cause a ‘specific prejudice or harm.'” Id. (quoting Phillips ex rel. Estates of Byrd v. Gen. Motors Corp., 307 F.3d 1206, 1211-12 (9th Cir. 2002)). This standard is not satisfied by “[b]road allegations of harm, unsubstantiated by specific examples or articulated reasoning.” Id. (citing Phillips, 307 F.3d at 1211-12). Rather, a party seeking to obtain a protective order must make a ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.