KAPLAN v. SAINT PETER'S HEALTHCARE SYSTEM et al
MEMORANDUM ORDER: Defendants' Request to stay briefing on Plaintiffs two pending motions (ECF Nos. 83, 89) is DENIED; Plaintiffs request to order Defendants' participation in a Rule 26(f) conference or for expedited discovery is DENIED. Signed by Judge Michael A. Shipp on 5/14/2014. (kas, )
NOT FOR PUBLICATION
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
LAURENCE KAPLAN, on behalfofhimself,:
individually, and on behalf of others similarly :
Civil Action No. 13-2941 (MAS)(TJB)
SAINT PETER'S HEALTHCARE SYSTEM, :
RONALD C. RAK, an individual, SUSAN
BALLESTERO, an individual, GARRICK
STOLDT, an individual, and JOHN and JANE:
DOES, each an individual, 1-20,
This matter comes before the Court upon the request of Defendants Saint Peter's Healthcare
System, Ronald C. Rak, Susan Ball estero, and Garrick Stoldt (collectively, "Defendants") to stay
briefing on Plaintiff Laurence Kaplan's ("Plaintiff') motions for partial summary judgment (ECF No.
81) and to strike Defendants' affirmative defenses (ECF No. 84). (Defs.' Req., ECF Nos. 83, 89.)
Plaintiff opposes Defendants' Request and asks the Court to order Defendants' participation in a
Rule 26(f) conference or, alternatively, excuse the Rule 26(f) conference and allow expedited
discovery. (Pl.'s Opp'n, ECF No. 86.)
In their Request, Defendants ask the Court to exercise its "case management powers" to stay
briefing on Plaintiffs motions pending resolution of Defendants' motion to certify the Court's March
31, 2014 Order for interlocutory appeal. Defendants assert that the stay will "avoid needless expense
to the parties" because the Court's determination of the motion to certify may render the summary
judgment motion moot. Plaintiff opposes, claiming that the Request would prejudicially delay
Plaintiffs receipt of ERISA protections. Moreover, Plaintiff asserts that Defendants have failed to
show "a clear case of hardship or inequity" to warrant a stay.
Although issuing a stay of the briefing schedule is within the Court's discretion, the Court
finds that Defendants have failed to demonstrate that "the circumstances justify an exercise of that
discretion." Thorner v. Sony Computer Entm 'tAm. LLC, No. 09-1894 (MLC), 2013 WL 1868500, at
*1 (D.N.J. May 3, 2013) (quoting Nken v. Holder, 556 U.S. 418, 433-34 (2009)) (internal quotation
marks omitted). The Court appreciates Defendants' case management concerns, but mere
inconvenience to Defendants does not justify a stay of the briefing schedule. Likewise, Plaintiff has
not demonstrated why a Rule 26(f) conference or expedited discovery is warranted at this time and,
in any event, is a request more appropriately placed before the magistrate judge.
The Court has carefully considered the Parties' submissions, and based on the foregoing and
other good cause shown,
IT IS on this 14th day of May, 2014, ORDERED that:
1) Defendants' Request to stay briefing on Plaintiffs two pending motions (ECF Nos. 83,
89) is DENIED.
2) Plaintiffs request to order Defendants' participation in a Rule 26(f) conference or for
expedited discovery is DENIED.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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