Doe H v. Haskell Indian Nations University et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER granting 50 Motion to Stay Discovery. Signed by Magistrate Judge Kenneth G. Gale on 6/7/17. (df)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
JANE DOE H.,
HASKELL INDIAN NATIONS
UNIVERSITY, et al.,
Case No. 16-2727-JTM-KGG
MEMORANDUM & ORDER ON
DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO STAY DISCOVERY
Now before the Court is Defendants’ Motion to Stay Discovery. (Doc. 50.)
For the reasons set forth below, the undersigned Magistrate Judge GRANTS
Plaintiff is a former student at Defendant Haskell Indian Nations University.
She alleges various violations of her federal rights, including pursuant to Title IX
of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Fifth Amendment of the United
States Constitution, as a result of a sexual assault she allegedly experienced on
Defendant’s campus in the fall of 2014. (See generally Doc. 1.)
Currently pending before the District Court in this matter are dispositive
motions filed by the individually named Defendants as well as Defendant United
States of America. (Docs. 29, 31, 33, 35.) Defendants have filed the present
motion (Doc. 50), seeking an Order staying discovery pending a ruling by the
District Court on the pending dispositive motions.
It is the general policy of this District not to stay discovery, notwithstanding
the existence of pending dispositive motions. Wolf v. United States, 157 F.R.D.
494, 495 (D.Kan.1994). Four exceptions to this policy have been recognized:
(1) the case is likely to be finally concluded via the
dispositive motion; (2) the facts sought through
discovery would not affect the resolution of the
dispositive motion; (3) discovery on all issues posed by
the complaint would be wasteful and burdensome; or (4)
the dispositive motion raises issues as to the defendant's
immunity from suit.
Citizens for Objective Public Educ. Inc. v. Kansas State Bd. of Educ., No.
1304119–KHV, 2013 WL 6728323, *1 (D. Kan. Dec.19, 2013); see also Kutilek v.
Gannon, 132 F.R.D. 296, 297–98 (D. Kan. 1990). The decision whether to stay
discovery rests in the sound discretion of the Court. Clinton v. Jones, 520 U.S.
681, 706, 117 S.Ct. 1636, 137 L.Ed.2d 945 (1997); see also Kutilek, 132 F.R.D. at
297; American Maplan. Corp. v. Heilmayr, 203 F.R.D. 499, 501 (D.Kan.2001)
(stating that a magistrate's non-dispositive pretrial orders are subject to a
deferential, “clearly erroneous” standard).
As discussed above, there currently are motions pending before the District
Court in which Defendant United States has asserted its sovereign immunity and
the individual Defendants have asserted the defense of qualified immunity. (See
Docs. 29, 31, 33, 35.) “[W]hen immunity is asserted by dispositive motion, a stay
of discovery is appropriate pending a ruling on the immunity issue.” Garrett’s
Worldwide Enterprises, LLC, et al. v. U.S., No. 14-2281-JTM, 2014 WL 7071713,
at *1 (D. Kan. Dec. 12, 2014). Defendant also argues that the stay is appropriate
because the pending dispositive motions “could finally conclude the litigation . .
.and discovery would not affect the resolution of that motion, or discovery would
be wasteful and unduly burdensome.” (Doc. 51, at 4.) The Court agrees.
Defendants’ requested stay is GRANTED.
Plaintiff asks the Court for “permission to depose the Individual Defendants
if the Court desires more factual allegations than what have been provided in the
Complaint.” (Doc. 60, at 1.) The dispositive motions will be decided by the
District Court, not the undersigned Magistrate Judge. As such, the undersigned has
discussed this issue with the District Court. The District Court will take the issue
of additional discovery under advisement and authorize such discovery, if any, as
the Court deems necessary.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Defendants’ Motion to Stay
Discovery (Doc. 50) is GRANTED.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated at Wichita, Kansas, on this 7th day of June, 2017.
S/ KENNETH G. GALE
KENNETH G. GALE
United States Magistrate Judge
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