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PAVLOU v. BAXTER HEALTHCARE CORP.

United States District Court, S.D. New York


April 27, 2004.

DONNA M. PAVLOU, et al. Plaintiffs, -against- BAXTER HEALTHCARE CORP., et al., Defendants

The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHARD HOLWELL, District Judge

Memorandum Opinion and Order

This case, a latex glove product liability action, was one of many cases consolidated for pre-trial discovery before the Eastern District of Pennsylvania by the Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation. It was later remanded back to the Southern District of New York pursuant to another Judicial Panel order, dated February 23, 2003, and referred for general pre-trial management to the Honorable Kevin N. Fox, United States Magistrate Judge for the Southern District of New York.

Plaintiffs object to part of Judge Fox's order, dated February 27, 2004, which limits the persons that plaintiffs may depose and also the topics of the depositions. Like plaintiffs' objections to past orders of Judge Fox, plaintiffs again argue that Judge Fox's order wrongly precludes plaintiffs from conducting discovery into general issues, which plaintiffs argue is contrary to certain Multidistrict Litigation ("MDL") orders, and deprives them of due process. Defendants oppose modification of the February 27 order on the same grounds as past opposition, namely that common fact and general expert discovery was completed before the MDL judge and should not be duplicated by this Court on remand from the MDL panel.

  A district court reviews orders issued by a magistrate judge regarding nondispositive pretrial matters under the "clearly erroneous or contrary to law" standard. See Thomas E. Hoar, Inc. v. Sara Lee Corp., 900 F.2d 522, 525 (2d Cir. 1990). "It is well-settled that a magistrate judge's resolution of a nondispositive matter should be afforded substantial deference and may be overturned only if found to have been an abuse of discretion." Rmed Int'l, Inc. v. Sloan's Supermarkets, Inc., No. 94 Civ. 5587 (PKL), 2000 WL 420548, at *2 (S.D.N.Y. Apr. 18, 2000).

  Consistent with this Court's prior ruling declining to modify the January 16 order, the Court again declines to modify or set aside that portion of the February 27 order to which plaintiffs object Plaintiffs had sufficient opportunity to seek discovery during the MDL proceedings. To rule otherwise would undermine the MDL proceedings.

  SO ORDERED.

20040427

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