Cepu Sakti Energy Pte. Ltd. v. Dejour Energy (USA) Corp. et al
ORDER granting 9 Defendants' Motion to Stay Discovery, Vacate Scheduling Conference and Defer Fed. R. Civ. P. 16 and 26 Scheduling Process Pending Determination of Motion to Dismiss 7 or until further Order of Court. Scheduling Conference 5/8/2014 09:00 AM is vacated. By Magistrate Judge Michael J. Watanabe on 4/24/2014.(emill)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLORADO
Civil Action No. 14-cv-00682-WYD-MJW
CEPU SAKTI ENERGY PTE. LTD., a Singapore corporation,
DEJOUR ENERGY (USA) CORP., a Nevada corporation, and
DEJOUR ENERGY INC., a Canadian corporation,
DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO STAY DISCOVERY, VACATE SCHEDULING
CONFERENCE AND DEFER FED. R. CIV. P. 16 AND 26 SCHEDULING PROCESS
PENDING DETERMINATION OF MOTION TO DISMISS (DOCKET NO. 9)
Entered by Magistrate Judge Michael J. Watanabe
This case is before this court pursuant to an Order referring the subject motion
(docket no. 9) issued by Judge Wiley Y. Daniel on April 17, 2014. See docket no. 10.
Now before the court is Defendants’ Motion to Stay Discovery, Vacate
Scheduling Conference and Defer Fed. R. Civ. P. 16 and 26 Scheduling Process
Pending Determination of Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 9). The court has carefully
considered the subject motion (docket no. 9) and the response (docket no. 13). The
court has taken judicial notice of the court’s file and has considered the applicable
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and case law. The court now being fully informed
makes the following findings of fact, conclusions of law, and order.
The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure do not expressly provide for a stay of
proceedings. See String Cheese Incident, LLC v. Stylus Shows, Inc.,
02–CV–01934–LTB–PA, 2006 WL 894955, at *2 (D. Colo. March 30, 2006)
(unpublished). Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26 does, however, provide that “[a] party
or any person from whom discovery is sought may move for a protective order in the
court where the action is pending . . . . The court may, for good cause, issue an order
to protect a party or person from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, or undue
burden or expense . . . .” Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(c).
Moreover, “[t]he power to stay proceedings is incidental to the power inherent in
every court to control the disposition of the causes on its docket with economy of time
and effort for itself, for counsel, and for litigants. How this can best be done calls for the
exercise of judgment, which must weigh competing interests and maintain an even
balance.” Landis v. North Am. Co., 299 U.S. 248, 254–55 (1936) (citing Kansas City S.
Ry. Co. v. United States, 282 U.S. 760, 763 (1931)). An order staying discovery is thus
an appropriate exercise of this court's discretion. Id.
A stay of all discovery is generally disfavored. Bustos v. United States, 257
F.R.D. 617, 623 (D. Colo. 2009). Courts have routinely recognized that discovery may
be inappropriate while issues of immunity or jurisdiction are being resolved. See, e.g.,
Siegert v. Gilley, 500 U.S. 226, 231–32 (1991) (noting that immunity is a threshold
issue, and discovery should not be allowed while the issue is pending); Workman v.
Jordan, 958 F.2d 332, 336 (10th Cir. 1992) (same). Similarly, a stay may be
appropriate if “resolution of a preliminary motion may dispose of the entire action.”
Nankivil v. Lockheed Martin Corp., 216 F.R.D. 689, 692 (M.D. Fla. 2003). See Vivid
Techs., Inc. v. American Science & Engineering, Inc., 200 F.3d 795, 804 (Fed. Cir.
1999) (“When a particular issue may be dispositive, the court may stay discovery
concerning other issues until the critical issue is resolved.”).
When considering a stay of discovery, this court has considered the following
factors: (1) the plaintiff's interests in proceeding expeditiously with the civil action and
the potential prejudice to plaintiff of a delay; (2) the burden on the defendants; (3) the
convenience to the court; (4) the interests of persons not parties to the civil litigation;
and (5) the public interest. See String Cheese Incident, 2006 WL 894955, at *2.
Here, the Defendants seek to stay all discovery pending resolution of their Motion
to Dismiss (docket no. 7). Therein, the Defendants argue that a stay of discovery and a
vacation of the Rule 16 Scheduling Conference should be ordered based upon their
pending Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 7) which alleges, in essence, that this court does
not have subject matter jurisdiction over this lawsuit. The Defendants argue that
discovery should be stayed in light of the pending Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 7) until
such time as Judge Daniel rules on such motion (docket no. 7). They further argue that
the String Cheese factors favor a stay.
As to the first and second String Cheese factors, the court recognizes that
plaintiff has an interest in proceeding expeditiously. The court recognizes that there is
certainly a burden on Defendants if a stay is not put in place. Defendants may be
forced to conduct discovery which may not otherwise be necessary.
As to the third String Cheese factor, the court does have an interest in managing
its docket by seeing the case proceed expeditiously. Finally, neither the interest of
nonparties nor the public interest in general weigh heavily in either direction.
Accordingly, on balance, the court finds that a stay of discovery is appropriate in
WHEREFORE, for the foregoing reasons, it is hereby
ORDERED that Defendants’ Motion to Stay Discovery, Vacate Scheduling
Conference and Defer Fed. R. Civ. P. 16 and 26 Scheduling Process Pending
Determination of Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 9) is GRANTED. Discovery is STAYED
until after Judge Daniel rules on Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 7) or until
further Order of Court. It is further
ORDERED that the Rule 16 Scheduling/Planning Conference set on May 8,
2014, at 9:00 a.m. is VACATED.
BY THE COURT
Date: April 24, 2014
s/ Michael J. Watanabe
Michael J. Watanabe
United States Magistrate Judge
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