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Alliance Industries, Inc. v. Longyear Holdings

August 24, 2010

ALLIANCE INDUSTRIES, INC., PLAINTIFF,
v.
LONGYEAR HOLDING, INC., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Hugh B. Scott United States Magistrate Judge

Hon. Hugh B. Scott

Order

Before the Court is the latest motion of plaintiff/counterclaim defendant Alliance Industries ("Alliance") to compel (Docket No. 63*fn1 ; cf. Docket No. 44 (plaintiff's motion for extension of time and to compel discovery)). This Court granted, in part, Alliance's motion to compel and scheduled briefing on discovery sanctions (Docket No. 69). As with the prior Orders entered in this case, the parties' familiarity with them is presumed.

Now before the Court are two follow up motions. One, defendant/counterclaim plaintiff Longyear Holdings, Inc. ("Longyear"), moves for reconsideration of so much of the Order compelling it to "further answers to Interrogatories Nos. 1, 3, 4, and 5" (Docket No. 72). Two, Alliance submitted its fee application (Docket No. 71). Briefing for both motions had them submitted by August 16, 2010 (see Docket No. 69, Order at 9-10; Docket No. 73).

BACKGROUND

This is a diversity stockholders' suit arising from the purchase of stock in a corporation to acquire its subsidiary and subsequent disposition of funds in an escrow account created as part of the transaction (see Docket No. 1, Compl.).

Alliance's Motion to Compel

On April 12, 2010, Alliance sought complete responses to certain interrogatories it posed; documents responsive to its second document demand and a privilege log of documents Longyear withheld as privileged; documents requested during the Rule 30(b)(6) depositions and the deposition of a Longyear employee; and production of a Rule 30(b)(6) representative knowledgeable of tax benefits sought and received by Longyear, aside from the person produced (Docket No. 63, Pl. Attys' Jt. Affirm. ¶ 5; see Docket No. 68, Pl. Reply at 1-2).

Longyear responded (among other arguments) that it provided the relevant and requested items, that Alliance failed to communicate with Longyear to avoid this motion practice, Alliance had not articulated how the items sought were relevant to a claim or defense or specified what it sought (Docket No. 66, Def. Memo. at 1). Alliance, in its reply, reiterated that Longyear has failed to properly or fully respond to the pending interrogatories and document demands (Docket No. 68, Pl. Reply Memo. at 5-10, 10-13).

The Court granted Alliance's request to answer its Interrogatories Numbers 1, 3, 4, and 5, with a response from Longyear's officer or agent giving "complete answers, even if they refer to documents and testimony already provided to date in this action" (Docket No. 69, Order at 6).

The Court also set an application and briefing schedule for Alliance's application for its reasonable motion expenses for its prevailing portions of its motion (id. at 9-10).

Longyear's Motion for Limited Reconsideration

Longyear asks the Court to reconsider that portion of the Order compelling it to answer the disputed Interrogatories, arguing that a verified answer to them was provided by Longyear (Docket No. 72, Def. Motion at 3). Todd Henriksen, Longyear's Global Director, Human Resources Compensation and Benefits, signed two verifications to Longyear's Interrogatory answers (id. at 2; Docket No. 67, Def. Atty. Affirm. ¶ 20, Exs. K, L (second verification adopting statements in counsel's letter)).

Alliance, however, disputes whether the answers were complete and that its sole objection was not whether those answers were verified (Docket No. 74, Pl. Attys. Jt. Affirm. ¶¶ 4-7), noting that the other discovery compelled by the Order had yet to be produced (id. ¶¶ 3, 10-12, Exs. A, B). ...


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