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Hartford Casualty Insurance Co. v. American Dairy & Food Consulting Laboratories

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA FRESNO DIVISION


July 13, 2010

HARTFORD CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY, PLAINTIFF,
v.
AMERICAN DAIRY & FOOD CONSULTING LABORATORIES, INC., AND DOES 1 THROUGH 10, INCLUSIVE, DEFENDANTS. AMERICAN DIARY & FOOD CONSULTING LABORATORIES, INC., COUNTER-CLAIMANT,
v.
HARTFORD CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY, COUNTER-DEFENDANT,

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sheila K. Oberto United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER ON STIPULATION RE: DISCOVERY DISPUTE AND MOTION TO COMPEL (Docket Nos. 35, 36, 78, 79)

Counsel for Defendant/Counter-Claimant American Dairy and Food Consulting Laboratories, Inc. ("American Dairy"), by and through its attorneys of record, James H. Wilkins of Wilkins, Drolshagen & Czeshinski, LLP, and Plaintiff/Counter-Defendant Hartford Casualty Insurance Company ("Hartford"), by and through its attorneys of record, Catherine Rivard of Mendes & Mount, LLP, have met and conferred, with assistance from Magistrate Judge Oberto, and stipulated to the following with respect to the outstanding discovery dispute.*fn1

1. With respect to Interrogatories 8-12, and Request for Production of Documents 18-20, relating to the potential of Hartford asserting advice of counsel as a defense to claims of breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing and punitive damages, Hartford shall notify American Dairy by no later than September 3, 2010, whether it is electing to assert said defense in this action. If Hartford elects to assert advice of counsel as a defense in this action, it shall then provide full and complete responses to Interrogatories 8-12 and Request for Production of Documents 18-20 within 30 days following its election.

2. American Diary has agreed to withdraw Interrogatory 17 and therefore no further response will be required of Hartford.

3. With respect to Request for Production of Documents 12-16, relating to the claim manuals and guidelines available for reference in the handling and adjusting of claims, Hartford shall produce, no later than July 23, 2010, the guidelines or manuals for commercial property policies which set forth guidelines that would be applicable to the handling of theft and/or vandalism claims which were venued in California for the time frame January 1, 2008, through December 31, 2009.

4. With respect to Request for Production of Documents No. 17, relating to underwriting guidelines and/or manuals, Hartford shall produce to American Dairy by no later than July 16, 2010, the table of contents for the underwriting manual applicable to Spectrum commercial property policies during the time period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2008. American Dairy shall then identify what portions of the manual it seeks to have produced and Hartford shall then produce the requested portions within two weeks thereafter. To the extent any disagreements occur with respect to the requested designated portions, counsel shall meet and confer and if the disagreement is not resolved, shall notify Magistrate Judge Oberto.

5. With respect to Request for Production of Documents 32 through 35, relating to marketing materials provided to the Renaissance Insurance Agency, Hartford shall produce by July 23, 2010, the "New Appointment Package" provided to Renaissance Insurance Agency, and shall make a good faith effort to identify any additional responsive materials for commercial property policies for the time period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2008, which shall be produced by August 16, 2010.

6. With respect to Request for Production of Documents 36-37, relating to property inspections, Hartford shall produce by July 23, 2010, the checklist guideline used for the loss control inspection of American Diary's property in April 2008, and shall make a good faith effort to identify any additional training materials and/or guidelines applicable for property inspections involving commercial property policies during the period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2008, which shall be produced by August 16, 2010.

7. Production of documents pursuant to this stipulation shall be subject to and contingent upon with the entry of a protective order governing the confidentiality of such documents or the execution of a mutually agreeable confidentiality agreement.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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