26, 33, and 34 because defendants failed to state objections with specificity and apparently failedto make a “reasonable inquiry” before responding.After a hearing, the court ordered the parties to meet to resolve their differences. Thecourt pointed out that Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(g) required a reasonable inquiry by the attorney beforerequesting or responding to discovery. The growing concern over the expense of litigation,especially with the advent of electronic discovery, could be addressed, according to the court, if lawyers met and conferred before initiating discovery to discuss the amount in controversy andhow to conduct discovery that was proportional to what was at stake. The court stated that therequirement of discovery being proportional to what was at issue was effectively stated by Rule26(g)(1)(B)(iii) and Rule 26(b)(2)(C)(i)-(iii).The court noted that the Sedona Conference had issued a Cooperation Proclamation that hadthe laudable goal of achieving transparent discovery. In the meantime, the court provided theparties with guidance on the requirements of Rules 26(b)(2)(C) and 26(g). Counsel were orderedto meet “to quantify a workable ‘discovery budget’ that is proportional to what is at issue in thecase,” to consider phased discovery with initial production of least burdensome or expensivesources of information, and to present the court with a status report in a format required by thecourt identifying any unresolved issues.
Initial discovery considerations
Rule 26(d) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure generally provides that formaldiscovery will not commence until after the parties have conferred as required by Rule 26(f).
Courts may permit expedited discovery before the Rule 26(f) conference upon a showing of goodcause.
Good cause exists where the need for expedited discovery, in consideration of theadministration of justice, outweighs the prejudice to the responding party.
Rule 26(d) provides:A party may not seek discovery from any source before the parties have conferred asrequired by Rule 26(f), except in a proceeding exempted from initial disclosure under Rule26(a)(1)(B), or when authorized by these rules, by stipulation, or by court order.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(d) and (f); American LegalNet, Inc. v. Davis, 673 F. Supp. 2d 1063, 1066-67 (C.D. Cal. 2009);Qwest Communications Intern., Inc. v. WorldQuest Networks, Inc., 213 F.R.D. 418, 419 (D. Colo. 2003) (footnoteadded); In re Countrywide Financial Corp. Derivative Litigation, 542 F. Supp. 2d 1160, 1179 (C.D. Cal. 2008),subsequent determination, 554 F. Supp. 2d 1044 (C.D. Cal. 2008); Ayyash v. Bank Al-Madina, 233 F.R.D. 325,326, 63 Fed. R. Serv. 3d 680 (S.D. N.Y. 2005).
American LegalNet, Inc. v. Davis, 673 F. Supp. 2d 1063, 1066-67 (C.D. Cal. 2009), citing
In re Countrywide Fin.Corp. Derivative Litig.
, 542 F. Supp. 2d at 1179; Semitool, Inc. v. Tokyo Electron America, Inc., 208 F.R.D. 273,276 (N.D. Cal. 2002); see also Qwest Communications Intern., Inc. v. WorldQuest Networks, Inc., 213 F.R.D. 418,419 (D. Colo. 2003) (party seeking expedited discovery prior to Rule 26(f) conference has burden of showing goodcause); Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc. v. O'Connor, 194 F.R.D. 618, 623 (N.D. Ill. 2000) (expediteddiscovery requires plaintiff show
for the expedited discovery).
American LegalNet, Inc. v. Davis, 673 F. Supp. 2d 1063, 1066-67 (C.D. Cal. 2009), citing In re CountrywideFinancial Corp. Derivative Litigation, 542 F. Supp. 2d 1160, 1179 (C.D. Cal. 2008), subsequent determination, 554F. Supp. 2d 1044 (C.D. Cal. 2008).
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(d)(1).