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City of Lindsay v. Sociedad Quimica Y Minera De Chile

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


June 22, 2012

CITY OF LINDSAY,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
SOCIEDAD QUIMICA Y MINERA DE CHILE, S.A., ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sandra M. Snyder United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER RE: REQUEST FOR CLARIFICATION OF SCOPE OF STAY ORDER (Doc. 64)

On June 7, 2012, this Court stayed proceedings in this case through October 31, 2012, pending disposition of a related matter, City of Pomona v. Sociedad Quimica Y Minera De Chile S.A. (C.D. Cal. No. 2:11-cv-00167-RGK-VBK; 9th Cir. No. 12-55147). Defendants now request clarification of the effect of the stay on pending discovery between the parties and third-party discovery, the initiation of additional discovery of third parties, and issuance of litigation-hold subpoenas to third parties. The answer to these questions in simple: "The proceedings in this matter are stayed through October 31, 2012." Doc. 63 at 4.

In its order granting the stay, this Court explained:

Granting a stay pending resolution of the admissibility of Dr. Sturchio's testimony promotes the policy interests of control, efficiency, and fairness. The identical issue of admissibility with regard to Dr. Sturchio's testimony faces this Court. Were this Court to conduct a Daubert hearing and render a decision regarding the admissibility of Dr. Sturchio's testimony prior to the Ninth Circuit Court's decision in City of Pomona, the party disappointed by the outcome, whether Plaintiff or Defendant, would certainly appeal the determination. Delay will promote judicial efficiency and economy, provide guidance to this Court, and avoid unnecessary costs and fees.

Further nothing in the record indicates that either party will be prejudiced by a temporary stay. Defendant's arguments that evidence will become unavailable are not persuasive, particularly in light of the substantial discovery that has already occurred and the certainty of the waste of court hours, attorney and expert time, and other expenses should the Ninth Circuit Court eliminate Plaintiff's litigation strategy by upholding the district court's determination in City of Pomona. Indeed, if Dr. Sturchio's testimony is not admissible, Plaintiff has indicated that it will likely dismiss this case.

Doc. 63 at 4.

Permitting the parties to proceed with discovery and related activities is contrary to the stay's purposes of promoting judicial efficiency and economy and of avoiding necessary fees and costs. Accordingly, neither party may proceed with any discovery or litigation proceedings related to discovery until such time as the Court lifts the stay.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20120622

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