Lee v. Walters
United States District Court for the District of Oregon
172 F.R.D. 421 (D.Or. 1997)
Vicky Lee and another (plaintiffs) sued Walters and others (defendants) in federal court. During discovery, the plaintiffs requested production of documents, but the defendants did not submit a written response and only belatedly produced the documents after the plaintiffs asked the court for assistance. The defendants failed to appear at depositions. The defendants’ attorney, an experienced attorney named Barnes, said he would seek a protective order, but did not do so. As a result of Barnes’s dilatory tactics, the plaintiffs filed three motions to compel production. Barnes claimed he had a busy litigation schedule and travelled often. However, Barnes never indicated to opposing counsel or the court that he had no time for depositions; Barnes just ignored requests. Barnes and the defendants ignored or disobeyed four court orders and made no discovery responses at all. Lee moved the court for sanctions totaling $10,000 against the defendants and Barnes under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 37(a)(4)(A), (b), and (d); 26(g); and the court’s inherent authority.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Stewart, J.)
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