Magistrate Judge Compels Depositions And Criticizes Uncooperative Lawyers

Sheehan v. City of Markham, Dist. Court, ND Illinois 2012 – Google Scholar.

This is an unpublished decision involving a motion to compel depositions. It appears that the plaintiff was attempting to take the depositions of three Markham police officers. The court explained: “The current motion to compel recounts the difficulties over a period of months the plaintiff’s counsel has had in securing dates for depositions and contends that her efforts to schedule things have been met with intransigence on the part of the defendants’ lawyer. The defendants’ response essentially denies any wrongdoing or uncooperativeness. I need not resolve the conflict in the details, for the overall record shows that the plaintiff has been stymied and needlessly so in attempts to schedule depositions and that counsel for the defendants has plainly not been cooperative in the way and to the degree required by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. As a consequence, the depositions of Officers Starks and Gethers still have not been scheduled. And the fact that discovery has only a few more months to run does not justify what the defendants’ lawyer has done.[1]” The court then ordered the depositions to take place on certain dates and awarded the plaintiff its reasonable attorney fees under Rule 37.

Comment: Judges hate getting involved in disputes over trivial matters such as deposition scheduling when there are much more important and pressing matters for them to attend to.

Edward X. Clinton, Jr.

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