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Maritza Pinel, et al v. Aurora Loan Services

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT Northern District of California San Francisco Division

March 18, 2013


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Laurel Beeler United States Magistrate Judge


The parties have a discovery dispute about whether Plaintiffs should be able to depose Aurora a 18 and servicing history of putative class members, including how foreclosure status is tracked and 19 communicated. See Joint Letter Brief, ECF No. 189 at 1 & Ex. A. 20 More specifically, Aurora responded to interrogatories with spreadsheets of data concerning the 21 class member loans, and on August 29 and 30, 2012, Plaintiffs deposed Aurora. The issue is 22 whether Plaintiffs should get a second Rule 30(b)(6) deposition because Aurora provided 23 replacement spreadsheets with new data and fields on October 20, 2012, November 1, 2012, January 24 7, 2013, and January 17, 2013, which was the final spreadsheet. Plaintiffs characterizes the 25 productions as "different" and the January 7 production as "materially" different. Id. 26 Aurora argues that at least some topics can be answered in writing (such as the identity of the 27 person who created the spread sheets, the date and location of creation, and similar inquiries). Id. 28 (referencing Ex. A, topics 1-5 and 9-10). Plaintiffs responded that the spreadsheets are so different second time about regarding the storage, tracking, and production of data regarding the loan files 1 that they ought to get a chance to ask about the data (pointing to topic 4 as an example). The court 2 ruled that it was not going to foreclose a Rule 30(b)(6) deposition given Plaintiffs' representations 3 about how different the spreadsheets were. The process will begin, however, with Aurora's 4 providing written answers. 5 As to topics 6 and 7, those seek information about the types of data associated with a borrower. 6 Aurora does not dispute the relevance but says that Plaintiffs previously asked for specific categories 7 of information, and Aurora produced it that way. Now, Aurora said, Plaintiffs are asking for 8 information in topics 6 and 7 that they never asked for before. At least on this record, the court 9 concludes that Aurora's compromise of providing the answers in writing makes sense. 10 The parties are working out topic 11 themselves. 11 As to topics 12 and 13, Plaintiffs narrowed the topics by adding the words "in your electronic 12 data systems" after the words "What terms YOU used" in topic 12 and "How YOU tracked" in topic 13. With that narrowing, for the same reasons that apply to topics 6 and 7, Aurora's written answers written responses about the electronic captures. To the extent that the issue is about whether this are sufficient on this record. 15 As to topic 14, the words "How communicated with outside vendors through your 16 electronic data systems" should be substituted for "How provided," and Aurora may provide 18 area of inquiry was adequately captured in the notice for the first deposition of Aurora (and whether 19 Aurora shut down the line of inquiry), that issue was not captured in the current discovery letter 20 brief. The parties should meet and confer and file a separate letter brief, but they should do so after 21 Aurora provides its written responses. Plaintiffs may reassert their "utility-and-no-burden-22 outweigh-policies-against-second-30(b)(6)-depositions" arguments in that second letter brief too. 23 At least at this point, however, the court is contemplating a second Rule 30(b)(6) deposition only on 24 new information conveyed in the updated databases. The court expects that the process in this order 25 should narrow the topics and shorten any deposition. 26



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