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United States v. Distribuidora Batiz

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


October 14, 2009

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
DISTRIBUIDORA BATIZ, S.A. DE C.V.; DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jan M. Adler U.S. Magistrate Judge

ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LIMITED EARLY DISCOVERY [Doc. 77]

Plaintiff United States filed a motion for limited early discovery seeking to take early discovery from the three judgment debtors in this case and from non-party First National Bank (the financial institution that made the loan upon which this suit is based) to obtain information reasonably necessary to effect service of process upon fourteen defendants who reside in Mexico and have not yet been served.*fn1 No opposition to the motion was filed.

As set forth in Judge Hayes' August 10, 2009 Order [Doc. 75], Rule 26(d) provides that a court may authorize discovery prior to the parties' Rule 26(f) conference where the requesting party demonstrates good cause. See Semintool, Inc. v. Tokyo Electron Am., Inc., 208 F.R.D. 273, 276 (N.D. Cal. 2002). "Good cause may be found where the need for expedited discovery, in consideration of the administration of justice, outweighs the prejudice to the responding party." Id.

Plaintiff has made multiple attempts to effect proper service on the 14 unserved defendants. Plaintiff cannot serve them under the Hague Convention without knowing the addresses at which they may be served. See OGM, Inc. v. Televisa, S.A. de C.V., 2009 WL 1025971 at *3 (C.D. Cal., Apr. 15, 2009); Brockmeyer v. May, 383 F.3d 798, 801 (9th Cir. 2004). Plaintiff has attached the proposed discovery requests to its motion. They are each narrowly tailored to seek information relevant to ascertaining the addresses of the 14 defendants. Here, good cause exists for the limited early discovery Plaintiff seeks, as the United States needs the defendants' addresses to serve them and proceed with its claims, and providing such limited information imposes a minimal burden on the responding parties. Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff's motion for limited early discovery is GRANTED.


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