Spoliation

News & Analysis as of

Defendant Sanctioned for Failing to Preserve Text Messages and Failing to Produce Native Format Data: eDiscovery Case Law

In First Financial Security, Inc. v. Freedom Equity Group, LLC, No. 15-1893 (N.D. Cal., Oct. 7, 2016), California Magistrate Judge Howard R. Lloyd issued permissive adverse inference instruction sanctions against the...more

Not an LOL Matter: Court Provides Guidance on Steps Litigants Should Take to Preserve Text Messages

We’ve all been there. Your friends throw you in the pool with your phone in your pocket. You repeatedly slice your finger on shards of glass from your phone’s shattered screen. Or, maybe you forget your phone isn’t waterproof...more

Spoliator Alert! Discarding Your Pipes, Sumps and Slabs Can Cost You

The New Jersey Appellate Court recently upheld a spoliation claim against a plaintiff company that sued prior owners for violations of New Jersey’s Spill Compensation and Control Act and common law claims of nuisance and...more

E-Discovery Nightmares: 5 Experts Share Tales of Redactions, Huge Data Sets, and Things That Go Bump in the Night

Now that the days are growing short, and the summer sun gone, leaving us with overcast skies and wind driven mists clinging to the rain-soaked hills, the mood is set for telling stories of ghouls, goblins, and other specters...more

Before Asking for Sanctions, Check the Recycle Bin

Erhart v. BofI Holding, Inc., No. 15-cv-02287-BAS (NLS), 2016 WL 5110453 (S.D. Cal. Sept. 21, 2016). The court denied sanctions against a party where the huge majority of the files he deleted were not actually destroyed,...more

Slip and Fall Case Leads to Sanctions Faceplant

Atiles v. Golub Corp., No. 521828 (N.Y. App. July 28, 2016). The appellate court affirmed the lower court’s denial of an adverse inference instruction where the plaintiff did not establish that the additional video...more

“Can I Throw Out Those Dust Covered Files?” Defensibility, Efficiency, and the Comprehensive Guide to E-Discovery Preservation

When I was in high school, I worked for a family-owned office supply store, one of the last of the local businesses left on main street in the small Midwestern town where I lived. It was a frustrating job most of the time...more

"The E-Discovery Digest - October 2016"

The fifth edition of The E-Discovery Digest focuses on recent decisions addressing the scope and application of the attorney client privilege and work-product doctrine, spoliation, and discovery responses. Please see...more

Dropped Cell Phone Does Not Lead to Spoliation Sanctions Under Amended Rule 37(e): eDiscovery Case Law

In Shaffer v. Gaither, No. 14-00106 (W.D. N.C., Sept. 1, 2016), North Carolina District Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr. ruled that the sanction of dismissal requested by the defendant for the plaintiff’s lost text messages was...more

Medical Litigation Newsletter - October 2016

When a Defensible Claim Goes Sour: Defending Spoliation of Evidence Claims - Let us assume you have a credible defense to the negligence allegations as to the care and treatment provided by a doctor, hospital, medical...more

Appeals Court Upholds Default Judgment for Discovery Violations, Including Wiping Files from Laptop: eDiscovery Case Law

In Trude et. al. v. Glenwood State Bank, et. al., Nos. A15-0378, A15-1863, A15-1864 (Minn. App., Aug. 15, 2016), a Minnesota Appeals Court affirmed the trial court’s entry of default judgment for repeated discovery...more

A Banner Week For Buckman Preemption

There used to be a TV show called “That Was the Week That Was.” It was a satirical look at the news of the prior week, but perhaps it’s most lasting accomplishment was to launch David Frost’s career. Without an ounce of...more

Being a Returned Fugitive from Justice May Not Be the Worst Thing

But don’t flee justice! This is not legal advice to you, but I really don’t mean to recommend avoiding problems with federal prosecutors by going to other countries where it’s hard for those prosecutors to catch up with you....more

$3 Million Spoliation Sanction Despite Company’s Litigation Hold

Manufacturers involved in litigation must properly preserve electronically-stored information (“ESI”) or potentially face daunting sanctions. A recent antitrust case, however, demonstrates that lessons—multi-million dollar...more

2016 Updates to Ediscovery for Defendants Cheat Sheet

We’ve been remiss in updating our cheat sheet devoted to ediscovery for defendants. Because of the broad nature of the topic – these cases can and do arise in a wide variety of non-drug/device contexts – we have to research...more

If Your Expert Doesn’t Know the Product he is Testifying on, You’re Gonna Have a Bad Time

Most will remember the case McDougall v. Black & Decker Canada Inc. as being the leading Alberta case on the issue of spoliation. A fire occurred which burned down the Plaintiffs' house. The Fire Department who initially...more

Party’s Willful Destruction of Data Did Not “Optimize” the Case for Dismissal

Ericksen v. Kaplan Higher Educ., LLC, No. RDB-14-3106, 2016 WL 695789 (D. Md. Feb. 22, 2016). Where a plaintiff “willfully [ran] a computer program that she knew, given her computer expertise, would destroy at least some...more

The Failure to Issue a Legal Hold Can Cause a Case to Crash and Burn

Bruner v. Am. Honda Motor Co., No. 1:15-00499-N, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62810 (S.D. Ala. May 12, 2016). Where a defendant had never initiated a legal hold and had been continuously deleting e-mails since litigation began,...more

I am not a Crook: Avoiding the Politics of Data Preservation with a Defensible E-Discovery Process

Of course we've all heard about Hillary's emails, and Trump certainly has email trouble of his own. For a while, Politwoops kept track of mistweets and other online regrets even after they were deleted until Twitter (and...more

"The E-Discovery Digest - June 2016"

The fourth edition of The E-Discovery Digest focuses on recent decisions addressing the scope and application of the attorney-client privilege and work-product doctrine, spoliation, cost shifting and other e-discovery...more

Want Sanctions? Establish That Relevant Information Was Actually Lost

FiTeq, Inc. v. Venture Corp., No. 13-cv-01946-BLF, 2016 WL 1701794 (N.D. Cal. Apr. 28, 2016). In an order disposing of eleven motions in limine, the court denied the plaintiff’s request for sanctions from alleged...more

Spoliation Claims Are Not a Recreational Vehicle to Be Raised at Any Time in a Case

LaFerrera v. Camping World RV Sales of Birmingham, No. 15-00473 (N.D. Ala. Mar. 21, 2016). Relying on state law, the court rejected a request for spoliation sanctions included as part of a motion for summary judgment...more

E-discovery and the Duty to Preserve

If you’re involved in a suit in federal court, then the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure apply to you. Rule 26(b) provides, among other things, that parties may obtain discovery regarding any non-privileged matter that is...more

Zapproved’s Brad Harris on Fundamentals of a Good Evidentiary Preservation Plan

The duty to preserve evidence is well established; litigants must take reasonable steps to ensure information is not deleted or altered once the duty arises. The duty to preserve applies equally to both plaintiff and...more

Sanctions Under FED. R. CIV. P. 37(E)

In December 2015, amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure went into effect. One of the amended rules, Rule 37(e), was completely rewritten in an attempt to develop a uniform, national standard for the imposition...more

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