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Advance Financial Corp. v. Utsey

United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama
2001 WL 102484 (2001)


Facts

Advance Financial Corp. (AFC) (plaintiff) filed a lawsuit against Utsey and others (defendants) in federal district court. A magistrate judge set deadlines for: (1) the written report required by Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 26(f), (2) the production of initial disclosures pursuant to FRCP 26(a)(1), and (3) the completion of discovery. When the parties failed to submit the Rule 26(f) report on time, the court ordered them to file it or show cause why they could not do so. After conferring by telephone, counsel for AFC submitted a draft report to the defendants’ counsel for his additions. Counsel for the defendants never responded. AFC therefore filed its report without any input or the signature of the defendants’ counsel. After the deadline for initial disclosures passed without any production by the defendants, AFC moved for sanctions. Upon the defendants’ request, the court extended the deadline for initial disclosures. The defendants again failed to timely produce, and AFC filed a second motion for sanctions. By that point, the defendants had also failed to produce documents in response to a deposition notice duces tecum. AFC was compelled to cancel depositions as a result of the defendants’ noncompliance. The court then ordered the defendants to show cause why sanctions should not be imposed. The defendants never responded to the court order, and AFC moved for sanctions a third time. At an oral hearing, counsel for the defendants explained that the noncompliance was due to medical issues resulting in his undergoing eye surgery the week prior. The magistrate judge considered AFC’s motion for sanctions.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Vollmer, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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