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G-I HOLDINGS, INC. v. BARON & BUDD

United States District Court, S.D. New York


March 29, 2004.

G-I HOLDINGS, INC., Plaintiff, -against- BARON & BUDD; FREDERICK BARON; RUSSELL BUDD; NESS, MOTLEY, LOADHOLT, RICHARDSON & POOLE; RONALD MOTLEY; JOSEPH RICE; WEITZ & LUXENBERG; PERRY WEITZ and ROBERT GORDON, Defendants

The opinion of the court was delivered by: ROBERT SWEET, Senior District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Plaintiff G-I Holdings Inc. ("Holdings") has moved by letter of November 17, 2003 to obtain discovery from defendants Baron & Budd, Frederick Baron, Russell Budd ("Baron & Budd"), Ness, Motley, Loadholt, Richardson & Poole, Ronald Motley, Joseph Rice ("Ness Motley") and Weitz & Luxenberg, Perry Weitz, Robert Gordon ("Weitz & Luxenberg") (collectively, the "Defendants") and the Defendants by letter of December 5, 2003, have moved to obtain discovery from Holdings.

Prior Proceedings

  The status of this litigation and certain of the prior determinations are contained in G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 02 Page 2 Civ. 0216, 2004 WL 540456 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 17, 2004); G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 2004 WL 374450 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 27, 2004); G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 218 F.R.D. 409 (S.D.N.Y. 2003); G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 213 F.R.D. 146 (S.D.N.Y. 2003); G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 02 Civ. 0216, 2002 WL 31251702 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 8, 2002); G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 238 F. Supp.2d 521 (S.D.N.Y. 2002) ("Holdings II"); and G-I Holdings v. Baron & Budd, 179 F. Supp.2d 233 (S.D.N.Y. 2001), familiarity with which is presumed.

  Holdings seeks a breakdown of sick/non-sick clients, as defined in Exhibit 17 to its November 17, 2003 letter, attorneys' fees in each category, identification of persons with knowledge of settlement analysis and Center for Claims Resolution ("CCR") practices. The Defendants oppose these requests as oppressive in scope and in execution, noting that tens of thousands of client files are involved, that the files are undifferentiated, and that discovery into Defendants' motive is inappropriate.

  The parties will meet and confer on a process that will provide for a representative sampling of each of the defendant firms' files over the five-year period from 1994 to 1999 from which a percentage of sick and non-sick clients can be derived. Percentage of attorneys' fees for each of these years derived from asbestos litigation will be stated. Representative retainer agreements will be produced. A witness familiar with the settlement Page 3 process at the CCR before and after GAP was a member will be identified.

  Holdings seeks identification of a witness with knowledge of documents and communications concerning opposition to the Fairness in Asbestos Compensation Act ("FACA"), the expulsion of GAF from the CCR, and the February and April meetings with Holdings' predecessor. Such a witness will be identified.

  Documents exchanged between the Defendants or third parties relating to those topics and the formation and operation of the Coalition for Asbestos Resolution ("CAR") will be produced.

  Holdings seeks identification from Ness Motley and Weitz & Luxenberg of a witness with knowledge of the negotiation, modification and performance of the Futures Agreement. Such a witness will be identified.

  Any documents between Ness Motley and Weitz & Luxenberg and their clients referencing the Futures Agreements will be produced.

  The Defendants seek production of all documents identified by Holdings in response to interrogatories, noting certain Bates numbered identified documents have not been produced and that certain documents produced are incomplete. Bates numbered Page 4 identified documents will be produced as well as missing portions of any produced documents.

  Fact discovery will be completed by May 14, 2004. Any dispositive motions will be made returnable June 16, 2004. The pretrial order will be filed on September 15, 2004.

  It is so ordered.

20040329

© 1992-2004 VersusLaw Inc.



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