United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
RICHARD L. BOURGEOIS, JR. UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
the Court is Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery (R.
Doc. 88) filed on August 16, 2017. The motion is opposed. (R.
Court held oral argument on September 8, 2017. (R. Doc. 109).
instant discovery dispute concerns written discovery
propounded by Plaintiff on February 7, 2017. (R. Doc. 88-3).
15, 2017, defense counsel wrote Plaintiff's counsel,
asserting that responses to the discovery propounded would
not be provided until June 5, 2017, or 30 days after the
issuance of the Court's Scheduling Order on May 5, 2017.
(R. Doc. 104-1).
25, 2017, Defendant moved for summary judgment on the basis
that Plaintiff failed to exhaust all available administrative
remedies prior to filing the suit as required by 42 U.S.C.
§ 1997e(a). (R. Doc. 70). Plaintiff has opposed the
motion. (R. Doc. 72).
5, 2017, Defendant filed a motion to stay discovery pending
resolution of her motion for summary judgment. (R. Doc. 71).
The Court denied the motion on July 17, 2017. (R. Doc. 79).
24, 2017, defense counsel informed Plaintiff's counsel
that the filing of Defendant's motion to stay discovery
“inevitably stayed discovery until an Order was entered
on July 17, 2017.” (R. Doc. 104-2). Based on the
foregoing, defense counsel asserted that Defendant's
discovery responses would not be provided until August 16,
2017. (R. Doc. 104-2). Defense counsel further asserted that
Plaintiff's counsel's attempts at scheduling a Rule
37 discovery conference were premature and that defense
counsel did not agree to a date for such a conference. (R.
August 1, 2017, Defendant provided responses to
Plaintiff's discovery requests. (R. Doc. 88-4).
counsel sent an email and fax to defense counsel dated August
14, 2017, which outlined various alleged deficiencies with
the discovery responses, and requested a discovery conference
to be held on August 16, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. (R. Doc. 88-7).
Defendant asserts that her counsel received the letter on
August 15, 2017. (R. Doc. 104 at 3).
August 16, 2017, Plaintiff's counsel then attempted to
hold a discovery conference as unilaterally scheduled. (R.
Doc. 88-6 at 1-2). Defense counsel responded by stating that
she was “not available for said conference today and
will advise when I am available at a later date.” (R.
Doc. 88-6 at 1). When Plaintiff's counsel sought an
actual date for a discovery conference, defense counsel
responded that providing a date for a discovery conference
was not a “pressing matter” in light of the
discovery deadline in late November and other work
obligations. (R. Doc. 88-6 at 1).
that afternoon, Plaintiff filed the instant motion to compel
discovery. (R. Doc. 88). Defendant opposes the motion on the
basis that the responses provided are valid, and Plaintiff
did not confer or attempt to confer with Defendant in good
faith prior to filing the motion to compel. (R. Doc. 104).
to and during oral argument held on September 8, 2017,
defense counsel produced additional documents. (R. Doc. 109
at 1). Plaintiff's counsel indicated at oral argument
that certain issues regarding Plaintiff's motion to
compel may be ...