Login

Login

To access this feature, please Log In or Register for your Casebriefs Account.

Add to Library

Add

Search

Login
Register

Major Tours, Inc. v. Colorel

    Brief Fact Summary.

    Major Tours (plaintiff) sued state officials and a repair shop (collectively defendants) for alleged discrimination.

    Synopsis of Rule of Law.

    If a party is negligent, which causes certain discoverable data to be inaccessible, and the opposing parties need for the information is not outweighed by the burden to produce, the judge may release the obligation to produce that information.

    Facts.

    Plaintiff sued the defendants for unlawful discrimination. The defendants were first put on notice that there may be a claim against them when they received a letter that litigation may commence against them in 2003. However, the defendants did not issue a formal litigation hold letter until 4 years later in 2007. During discovery, the plaintiffs requested emails the date back to before the litigation hold was issued. The defendant’s argued that it would be too costly to recover the emails because they were deleted and the plaintiffs responded that it was the defendants fault because the defendant’s failed to preserve them. The judge ruled that the plaintiffs need for the evidence was not outweighed by the burden and cost of the defendants producing them. The judge explained that the plaintiffs had enough information and it was unlikely they would find any relevant information, and the defendant’s negligence was unintentional.

    Issue.

    Whether if a party is negligent, which causes certain discoverable data to be inaccessible, and the opposing parties need for the information is not outweighed by the burden to produce, the judge may release the obligation to produce that information.

    Held.

    Yes. If a party is negligent, which causes certain discoverable data to be inaccessible, and the opposing parties need for the information is not outweighed by the burden to produce, the judge may release the obligation to produce that information.

    Discussion.

    Under rule 26 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a party may not be required to produce documents that are requested if those documents are not reasonably accessible. While a court may have required the production here if the plaintiffs had shown good cause, the burden and cost on the defendants greatly outweighs the need. There are several factors to consider when evaluating the need for the plaintiff including: how specific is the production request; is any relevant information available from other sources; the party’s failure to produce evidence that once existed but is no longer available; if the information is available what is the importance and usefulness of the information that the party seeks; the importance of the issues at trial; and the parties’ resources to recover other information. Here, the judge did not abuse their discretion because several factors weighed in favor of the defendant.


    Create New Group

      Casebriefs is concerned with your security, please complete the following