United States District Court, D. Kansas
ORDER DENYING MOTION TO COMPEL PRODUCTION OF
NON-PARTY LITIGATION FILES
KENNETH G. GALE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Jackie Vietti, Ph.D. (hereby referred to as
“Defendant”) has filed a motion to compel
Plaintiff to respond, or to respond more fully, to
Defendant’s Requests for Production of Documents under
Fed.R.Civ.P. 34 and Interrogatories under Fed.R.Civ.P. 33.
(Doc. 59.) Plaintiff has filed responses to these requests,
including objections, so the Court’s task is to
consider the objections and evaluate the adequacy of the
responses. Having reviewed the parties’ submissions,
including the discovery requests and responses at issue, the
Court GRANTS in part and DENIES in part Defendant’s
motion (Doc. 59).
Standards for Discovery.
parties “may obtain discovery regarding any
nonprivileged matter that is relevant to a party’s
claim or defense and proportional to the needs of the
case.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b)(1). Plaintiff has not
interposed claims of privilege to the requests as issue and
the Court does not find obvious issues of privilege in the
requests. Thus, the task is, for the most part, for the Court
to determine whether Defendant’s discovery requests are
relevant and proportional.
Plaintiff’s Response (Doc. 64) focuses on the conduct
of Defendants during discovery, complaining that that
Defendants have not complied with Plaintiff’s discovery
requests. These issues are not relevant to the present
motion. Rather, they must be evaluated on their own merit if
and when raised by Plaintiff by separate motion. Given this
general background, the Court thus analyses the discovery
requests at issue.
Requests for Production.
propounded twelve separate Requests for Production of
Documents to Plaintiff. Plaintiff submitted written
responses, but did not actually produce any documents.
Plaintiff is required to produce actual documents identified
in the responses which are within the scope of discovery. For
efficiency, Plaintiff need not produce documents which were
produced to him by Defendants or marked as exhibits in
depositions or pleadings, but such responsive documents must
be identified in his response by specific page number or
exhibit number. Plaintiff also need not produce an actual
document which is clearly identified if defense counsel
agrees Defendant is already in possession of the
document. Otherwise, the discovery response is not complete
until the document is produced to Defendant.
No. 1 seeks documents Plaintiff “reasonably
anticipate[s] introducing as an exhibit in the trial of this
matter.” (Doc. 60-3, at 2.) Plaintiff objects that the
request is overbroad, does not comply with Fed.R.Civ.P. 34,
and calls for irrelevant information. Plaintiff’s
unsupported objections are overruled. A party objecting to
discovery requests has the burden to substantiate those
objections unless the request is facially objectionable.
See Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. v. Kirk's Tire
& Auto Serv. Cntr., 211 F.R.D. 658, 663 (D. Kan.
2003) (holding that a party objecting to undue burden or
relevancy has the burden to establish the objection).
Plaintiff is ORDERED to respond to Request No. 1.
addition to the objections, Plaintiff provided an extensive
list of documents in response to this request. He did not,
however, provide Defendant with the requested documents.
Plaintiff is, therefore, ORDERED to provide copies of the
actual documents within the parameters described in the
initial paragraph of this section, supra.
Defendant’s motion is GRANTED as to
No. 2 asks for documents “reflecting any remuneration
for work . . . and/or benefits . . . Plaintiff has received
since leaving employment with Defendant.” (Doc. 60-3,
at 5.) Plaintiff responds that he has not worked and is
living on Social Security. (Id.) Plaintiff has,
however, failed to provide supporting documentation. The
motion is GRANTED. Plaintiff is ORDERED to
produce any documents reflecting remuneration from Social
Security. Plaintiff is directed to redact (black out) his
Social Security Number from any such responsive document(s)
No. 3 asks for Plaintiff’s tax records for the past
five years. (Doc. 60-3, at 5.) Plaintiff’s relevance
objection is sustained in part because the request is
facially irrelevant, in part. Holick v. Burkart, No.
16-1188-JTM-KGG, 2017 WL 5904033, at *3 (D. Kan. Nov. 30,
2017). Plaintiff is ORDERED to provide his Federal Tax
Returns beginning with the year he last worked for Emporia
State University. This should include any form W-2, 1099, or
other tax form(s) reflecting income or payments for work or
government benefits. He need not produce any attachments
relating only to his spouse or relating to income from
interest or investments. He is directed to redact his Social
Security number. The Motion is GRANTED in part.
No. 4 seeks documents related to Plaintiff’s job
search. (Doc. 60-3, at 5.) Plaintiff objects that the request
is overbroad, unduly burdensome, and does not comply with
Fed.R.Civ.P. 34. Plaintiff’s unsupported objections are
overruled. See Goodyear Tire, 211 F.R.D. at 663.
Defendant’s Motion is GRANTED as to Request No. 4.
Plaintiff is ORDERED to respond to Request No. 4.
No. 5 seeks documents “on which you base your claim
and/or which you contend support your allegations in the
Complaint.” (Doc. 60-3, at 6.) Plaintiff’s
unsupported objections to this request are overruled.
Goodyear Tire, 211 F.R.D. at 663. It is likely,
however, that this request is mostly, perhaps entirely,
redundant with Request No. 1. Plaintiff is thus ORDERED to
identify and produce any documents not identified and
produced in response to Request No. 1. Defendant’s
Motion is GRANTED in part as to this request.
No. 6 asks for documents relating to statements by any
Defendant or their representatives concerning the allegations
in the Complaint. (Doc. 60-3, at 6.) Plaintiff objects that
the request is overbroad, fails to comply with Fed.R.Civ.P.
34, and calls for irrelevant information. (Id.)
Plaintiff’s unsupported objections are overruled.
See Goodyear Tire, 211 F.R.D. at 663. Plaintiff will
respond by identifying documents responsive to this request,