Olga Despotis Trust v. The Cincinnati Insurance Company
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Defendant's Motion to Compel Deposition Testimony Responding to Certified Questions and for Sanctions 42 is DENIED. Signed by District Judge Ronnie L. White on 8/20/2014. (NCL)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
OLGA DESPOTIS TRUST,
THE CINCINNATI INSURANCE
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on Defendant's Motion to Compel Deposition Testimony
Responding to Certified Questions and for Sanctions (ECF No. 42). This matter is fully briefed
and ready for disposition. 1
In the Motion to Compel, Defendant asks the Court to compel answers to certified
questions that were asked during the April 18, 2014 deposition of Plaintiffs trustee, Dr. George
Despotis. See ECF No. 43 (outlining questions marked as (a)-(g) that Dr. Despotis refused to
answer). Dr. Despotis previously testified approximately two years prior to the subject deposition
in Cause No. 4:1 lcv1070, before that action was voluntarily dismissed by Plaintiff. Defendant
claims that Dr. Despotis improperly refused to answer questions at his April 18, 2014 deposition
on the grounds of relevance and because he had been previously deposed in the prior, dismissed
Defendant argues that the Court should compel Dr. Despotis' answers because his
counsel's objections do not fall within one of the categories under Fed.R.Civ.P. 30(c)(2). See
Plaintiff filed its Memorandum in Opposition to Defendant's Motion to Compel Deposition
Testimony and Motion for Protective Order ("Opposition"; ECF No. 52). Defendant has not
filed a reply in support of its Motion to Compel and the time for filing a reply brief has run. E.D.
Mo. L.R. 4.0l(C).
Fed. R. Civ. P. 30(c)(2), in relevant part ("A person may instruct a deponent not to answer only
when necessary to preserve a privilege, to enforce a limitation ordered by the court, or to present
a motion under Rule 30(d)(3)").
Dr. Despotis, however, appeared for the April 18, 2014 deposition with the understanding
that he would not be subjected to inquiry regarding matters that had previously been raised at his
May 12, 2012 deposition, or that could have been raised at that deposition. See Opposition at 23. Rather, Defendant's deposition of Dr. Despotis was limited to new events that occurred after
his May 12, 2012 deposition. Plaintiff has shown that Defendant's lines of inquiry were either
raised during the May 12, 2012 deposition or that could have been raised at the prior deposition.
See Opposition at 4-9 (noting that items (c), (e), (f), and (g) were discussed at the first
deposition, and that items (a), (b), and (d) could have been raised at the first deposition). 2
Therefore, the Court finds that Plaintiffs counsel's objections were proper and that Defendant's
questions were merely an attempt to obtain a second bite at the apple.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Defendant's Motion to Compel Deposition Testimony
Responding to Certified Questions and for Sanctions  is DENIED.
~r day of August, 2014.
RONNIE L. WHITE
UNITED ST ATES DISTRICT JUDGE
To the extent that items (a), (b), and (d) were not raised at any deposition, the Court believes
that these lines of inquiry can be adequately addressed through interrogatories addressed to
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