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Candace Casida, Individually, and On Behalf of All Others Similarly Situated v. Sears Holdings Corporation and Sears

December 23, 2011

CANDACE CASIDA, INDIVIDUALLY, AND ON BEHALF OF ALL OTHERS SIMILARLY SITUATED, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SEARS HOLDINGS CORPORATION AND SEARS, ROEBUCK & CO.,
DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jennifer L. Thurston United States Magistrate Judge

[Additional counsel for Plaintiff listed on signature page]

STIPULATED AGREEMENT AND ORDER RE ELECTRONICALLY STORED INFORMATION

Plaintiff Candace Casida ("Plaintiff") and Defendants Sears Holdings Corp. and Sears, Roebuck and Co. ("Defendants") and collectively ("the parties") through their undersigned 3 attorneys, recognize that certain documents*fn1 and electronically stored information ("ESI") are 4 potentially relevant to the parties' claims and defenses in this action and the parties have engaged 5 and will soon engage, in discussions regarding the identification and production of such 6 documents and ESI.*fn2 7

To facilitate the cost-effective and speedy exchange of discovery in accordance with Rule 26, the parties stipulate as follows: 9

I.SUMMARY OF CLAIMS AND DEFENSES

As set forth in the parties' joint scheduling report, this case is a putative class action alleging violations of California wage and hour law brought by Plaintiff Candace Casida against 12 Defendants Sears, Roebuck and Co. and Sears Holdings Corporation in connection with 13

Plaintiff's past employment with Sears, Roebuck and Co. as an "Assistant Manager" at a store in 14

Bakersfield, California. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants erroneously classified her and other 15 members of a proposed class of "Assistant Managers" as exempt from California's overtime laws, 16 resulting in the non-payment of overtime wages and other violations of California law. Plaintiff 17 alleges that she and members of the proposed class primarily performed non-exempt job duties 18 and lack the kind of independent judgment and discretion that is needed to qualify for the 19 managerial exemptions to overtime and other wage protections under California law, and were 20 therefore entitled to overtime compensation. Plaintiff further asserts that Defendants failed to pay 21 all compensation due and owing at termination, failed to provide itemized wage statements, and 22 violated California's unfair competition law.

Defendants assert that Plaintiff and other "Assistant Managers" were properly classified as exempt and were paid correctly. Defendants dispute that this case is suitable to proceed as a class 3 action because of differences between putative class members, and the need (as required by 4 California law) for a week-by-week analysis of how each "Assistant Manager" actually spent his 5 or her time in order to establish qualification for exempt status. 6

This case was originally filed where Defendants maintain their headquarters in the Northern District of Illinois, Case No. 1:11-cv-02110, and was assigned to the Honorable Milton Shadur. In her original Complaint, Plaintiff brought a claim for overtime pay on behalf of a 9 proposed nationwide class of Sears' Assistant Managers under the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 10 U.S.C. § 201 et seq. ("FLSA"), as well as the claims stated above under California law. After 11 briefing by the parties, the Court declined to retain supplemental jurisdiction over the California 12 state law claims and severed and transferred those claims to the Eastern District of California on 13 June 24, 2011 ("the California proceeding"). Plaintiff's FLSA claim remains pending in the 14 Northern District of Illinois ("the Illinois proceeding"). 15

The parties agree that discovery of ESI should be probative of the claims and defenses described above.

II.SUMMARY OF EDISCOVERY

The parties held a meet and confer session on July 5, 2011, regarding preservation of documents including ESI. On July 11, 2011, Plaintiff propounded several discovery requests on Defendants in the Illinois proceeding, including requests for documents and interrogatories that 21 potentially encompass ESI (including, but not limited to, RFP 6, 15, 16, 17, 22, 24, 29, 30, 32, 33, 22 and Interrogatory No. 3). On September 14, and September 28, 2011, Defendants provided 23 responses and objections to those requests.

On November 8, 2011, the parties met and conferred as ordered by the Eastern District of California to finalize an email protocol. Plaintiff sent several questions regarding Defendants' 26 email systems and custodians, to which ...


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