Jackson Family Wines, Inc et al v. Diageo North America, Inc. et al

Filing 116

ORDER by Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley denying in part and granting in part 115 Discovery Letter Brief (Motion to Compel) (ahm, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 12/2/2013)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 8 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 9 10 Northern District of California United States District Court 11 12 13 JACKSON FAMILY WINES, INC., et al., Plaintiffs, v. 14 15 16 17 Case No. 11-5639 EMC (JSC) ORDER DENYING IN PART AND GRANTING IN PART MOTION TO COMPEL (Dkt. No. 115) DIAGEO NORTH AMERICA, INC., et al., Defendants. 18 19 This trademark infringement action between wine industry competitors has resulted in 20 numerous discovery disputes. Although fact discovery closed in July 2013, the parties have 21 submitted yet another discovery dispute to the Court. On August 2, 2013, the Court granted 22 Plaintiffs’ motion to compel a 30(b)(6) deposition on, among other topics, the distribution of 23 Defendants’ Crème de Lye chardonnay product. (Dkt. No. 77.) The deposition of 24 Defendants’ 30(b)(6) designee on this topic, Paul Kalagher, occurred on October 30, 2013. 25 Plaintiff now seeks another deposition on this same topic on the ground that Mr. Kalagher was 26 not appropriately prepared to answer relevant questions. (Dkt. No. 115.) After carefully 27 considering the parties’ joint discovery letter brief, and having reviewed the transcript of Mr. 28 Kalagher’s deposition in its entirety, the Court declines to order a further deposition; however, 1 within one week of the date of this Order Defendants shall produce to Plaintiffs the documents 2 which Mr. Kalagher reviewed to prepare for this deposition to the extent such documents have 3 not previously been produced. 4 Plaintiffs’ Rule 30(b)(6) notice broadly sought testimony regarding “[d]istribution of 5 Your CRÈME DE LYS wine products, including but not limited to Your distribution through 6 Southern Wine & Spirits of America d/b/a Pacific Wine and Spirits.” (Dkt. No. 67-1.) While 7 Mr. Kalagher was unable to answer some questions which he should have been prepared to 8 answer, many of the deposition questions went to the topic’s scope or were not clearly called 9 for in light of its broad nature. For example, Mr. Kalagher cannot be faulted for not being Northern District of California able to answer questions regarding Defendants’ conduct with respect to Plaintiff’s La Crema 11 United States District Court 10 product or communications with distributors. Further, many of the questions were actually 12 about marketing, not distribution. If Plaintiffs wanted testimony on such discrete issues, the 13 deposition notice needed to be more specific. Further, Plaintiffs were on notice that 14 Defendants’ distributors would likely have the most specific knowledge of where Crème de 15 Lye is sold, yet Plaintiffs cancelled their deposition of Defendants’ largest distributor. At this 16 late date in the litigation when fact discovery has long closed a further 30(b)(6) deposition 17 would serve no purpose other than to increase the parties’ costs. 18 On the other hand, the answers to questions Mr. Kalagher should have been able to 19 answer—for example, factual questions regarding where Defendants’ product is sold—appear 20 for the most part to be included in the documents Mr. Kalagher reviewed to prepare for his 21 deposition. As Defendants do not dispute that the documents are relevant and responsive to 22 Plaintiffs’ previous discovery requests, Defendants shall produce the documents to Plaintiffs 23 within one week of the date of this Order to the extent the documents have not previously 24 been produced. 25 26 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: December 2, 2013 _________________________________ JACQUELINE SCOTT CORLEY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 27 28 2

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