The plaintiff filed a complaint against the defendant for patent infringement, trade dress infringement and unfair competition, among other claims, based on the defendants' marketing and selling of portable vaporizers. The plaintiff contended the portable vaporizers incorporated the plaintiff's technology.
After serving discovery, the defendants filed a motion to compel and the plaintiff did not respond to the motion to compel. After the district court issued an order to show cause why the motion should not be granted, the plaintiff filed a response to the district court's order stating that the lawyer's assistant had left the firm "causing communication between the Plaintiff and opposing counsel to suffer." Plaintiffs also reported that the parties had been attempting to settle, and Plaintiffs reasonably believed that the case would already have settled. On the same date, the Plaintiff moved for a thirty day extension of time to respond to the document requests, which the district court denied because the parties had not met and conferred.
After the plaintiff filed a response to the defendants' requests, the district court ordered the defendants to notify the district court if any issues remained for resolution. In the response, the defendants noted that the plaintiff did not produce any documents in response to the requests and that the plaintiff had instead objected to every request with boilerplate objections.
The district court did not find these responses well taken and ordered the objections waived. "As Defendants correctly point out, these responses violate the Court's General Order on Discovery Objections and Procedures which expressly prohibits non-specific, boilerplate objections, and which also warns that formulaic objections followed by an answer "notwithstanding the above," preserves nothing and wastes the resources of the parties and the Court. (ECF No. 37) Plaintiffs' generalized privilege objections do not comply with the local rules, which require that the specific nature of the privilege asserted be identified, as well as a privilege log identifying the subject matter of the communication at issue and the sender and receiver of the communication and their relationship with each other. S.D. Local Rule 26.1(g)(3)(B) and (C). Under the circumstances, the Court agrees with the Defendants, that the Plaintiffs' untimely objections are waived."
Atmos Nation, LLC v. Glow Industries, Inc., Case No. 16-60359-CIV-DIMITROULEAS/Snows (S.D. Fla. Oct. 14, 2016)
The authors of www.PatentLawyerBlog.com are patent trial lawyers at Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP. For more information about this case, contact Stan Gibson at 310.201.3548 or SGibson@jmbm.com.