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Smith v. Bayou Steel Co.

October 20, 2006

WILLIAM EDWARD SMITH, PLAINTIFF,
v.
BAYOU STEEL CORPORATION AND G & A ENVIRONMENTAL CONTRACTORS, INC., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: H. Bruce Guyton United States Magistrate Judge

(Phillips/Guyton)

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

This matter is before the undersigned pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b), the Rules of this Court, and by Order [Doc. 44] of the Honorable Thomas W. Phillips, United States District Judge, for disposition of Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery Relative to Defendant Bayou Steel Corporation [Doc. 42] and Bayou Steel's Motion for Protective Order [Doc. 43]. The undersigned held a hearing on these motions on October 18, 2006. Present on behalf of the plaintiff were attorneys Douglas Weinstein and Reid Troutman. Present on behalf of the defendant Bayou Steel Corporation ("Bayou Steel") was attorney Thomas H. Peebles, IV.

For the reasons stated by the Court on the record, and as set forth in the attached transcript, Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery Relative to Defendant Bayou Steel Corporation [Doc. 42] is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART.

With respect to Bayou Steel's Motion for Protective Order [Doc. 43], the Court finds that Bayou Steel's motion is not well-taken. Bayou Steel moves to quash the Notice of 30(b)(6) Deposition propounded by the plaintiff on the grounds that Bayou Steel has fully responded to the written discovery propounded to it in this case and that the individuals that Bayou Steel intends to designate as 30(b)(6) corporate representatives have already been deposed and have fully answered the questions posed to them related to the topics stated in the 30(b)(6) notice.

The Court finds that the plaintiff is entitled to depose the defendant's 30(b)(6) witnesses and to obtain the sworn testimony of these witnesses not just as individuals but as corporate representatives of the defendant. Accordingly, Bayou Steel's Motion for Protective Order [Doc. 43] is DENIED.

At the hearing, the plaintiff made an oral motion for leave to reschedule the 30(b)(6) deposition, which is currently scheduled to take place on October 19, 2006, until such time as the plaintiff has had an opportunity to review the defendant's supplemental discovery responses that have been ordered by this Court. For good cause shown, the plaintiff's oral motion for leave to reschedule the 30(b)(6) deposition is GRANTED. The defendant shall have until October 25, 2006 in which to supplement its discovery responses. The 30(b)(6) deposition shall be rescheduled for a time after such discovery responses have been supplemented, and the parties are hereby instructed to notify the Court's chambers if and when the deposition is rescheduled. If the parties are unable to agree upon a rescheduled date, the parties shall bring the issue to the attention of Judge Phillips at their scheduled hearing before the District Court on October 26, 2006.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

Case No. 3:05-cv-332 (Following is the Court's bench ruling on interrogatories on October 18th, 2006:)

THE COURT: All right. Then let's go through these interrogatories beginning -- Like I say, just make notes so that if I miss one that's in contention or something, I say needs clarification, let me know. Let's begin with Interrogatory No. 3. It's going to be the ruling of the Court that the Defendant is going to have to supplement the answer to No. 3 to provide the name and addresses of each person, including experts which the Defendant claims have knowledge regarding facts related to the accident or damages claimed resulting therefrom.

Interrogatory No. 6, the Court is going to find that the Defendant's answer to that interrogatory is adequate. Interrogatory No. 11, the Court is going to find that the Defendant's answer to that interrogatory is adequate.

Interrogatory No. 12, the Court is going to find that the Defendant is going to have to supplement the answer to No. 12 to provide any changes, remedial measures or anything of that nature which the Defendant has made in the physical site of the accident or the warnings or signs relating thereto. That information is discoverable. Its admissibility at trial, of course, to be determined later. But it is discoverable, and the objection made to Interrogatory No. 12 by the Defendant is going to be overruled.

Interrogatory No. 14, the Court is going to find that the Defendant will have to supplement that answer simply by stating, as requested, the name of the person or persons who conducted any investigation.

Interrogatory No. 15, the answer is, for the most part, adequate. However, there's going -- the Defendant will have to either submit a privilege log or waive any objection with regard to work product. The Defendant also is going to have to, as requested, state the name or names of ...


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