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Plum Healthcare Group, LLC v. One Beacon Professional Inc.

United States District Court, S.D. California

May 26, 2017

PLUM HEALTHCARE GROUP, LLC, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
ONE BEACON PROFESSIONAL INSURANCE, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO AMEND ADMISSIONS

          HON. MITCHELL D. DEMBIN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Before this Court is Defendants' Motion to Withdraw and Amend Deemed Admissions filed on April 28, 2017. (ECF No. 51). Plaintiffs filed their opposition on May 17, 2017. (ECF No. 56). Defendants filed their reply on May 25, 2017. (ECF No. 57). As provided herein, Defendants' motion is GRANTED. Defendants may withdraw their previously deemed admissions and respond to Plaintiff's Request for Admissions within fourteen (14) days of the entry of this Order.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         Rule 36, Fed. R. Civ. P., governs requests for admissions. The Rule allows for a party to request that another party admit the truth of specific facts, application of law to fact, opinions about either, and the genuineness of certain documents. Rule 36(a)(1). A party receiving a request for admission must answer within 30 days or the matter is deemed admitted. Rule 36(a)(3).

         Once the matter is admitted under the Rule, a court may allow the admission to be withdrawn or amended upon motion. Rule 36(b). The Rule provides that the court may permit withdrawal or amendment if it would promote the presentation of the merits of the action and if the court is not persuaded that it would prejudice the requesting party in maintaining or defending the action on the merits.

Rule 36(b).

         DISCUSSION

         This unfortunate situation derives from the failure of Defendants' former attorney, Matthew Elstein, to adequately and competently represent his clients. Once Mr. Elstein's negligence and prevarications became known, Defendants obtained new counsel who described Mr. Elstein's conduct as “grossly negligent” in seeking relief from the Scheduling Order in this case.

         (See ECF No. 39-1 at 4:2-4[1]). Specifically, Defendants alleged that Mr. Elstein:

1) led Defendants to believe that [Elstein] would file a motion to dismiss Plaintiff's claims, but never did;
2) did not inform Defendants that Plaintiffs filed a motion for summary adjudication; 3) missed the expert disclosure deadlines;
4) misled Defendants that the expert disclosure deadlines had been extended when they had not; and,
5) misled Defendants that the time to take percipient and expert witness depositions had been extended when it had not.

(Id.). It also appears that Mr. Elstein failed to respond to Plaintiff's second set of interrogatories. (ECF No. 57-2). The issue in the instant motion concerns whether or not Mr. Elstein responded to Plaintiff's requests for admissions and, regardless, whether Defendants ...


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