United States District Court, E.D. California
STORZ MANAGEMENT COMPANY, a California Corporation, and STORZ REALTY, INC., Plaintiffs,
ANDREW CAREY, an individual, and MARK WEINER, an individual, Defendants.
Deborah Barnes, Judge
to Local Rule 302(c)(1), this matter came before the
undersigned on June 21, 2019, for hearing of non-parties'
motions to quash (ECF Nos. 74-77), and plaintiffs' motion
for sanctions. (ECF No. 78.) Attorneys Andrew Bluth and
Christopher Bakes appeared on behalf of the plaintiffs.
Attorneys Charles Post and Alex Kachmar appeared on behalf of
consideration of the arguments on file and those made at the
hearing, and for the reasons set forth on the record at that
hearing and below, the motions will be denied.
commenced this action on January 11, 2018, by filing a
complaint and paying the required filing fee. (ECF Nos. 1
& 2.) On January 30, 2018, plaintiffs filed an amended
complaint. (ECF No. 7.) In relevant part, the amended
complaint alleges that plaintiff Storz Management Company,
(“Storz Management”), provides RV Park and Mobile
Home Park management services. (Am. Compl. (ECF No. 7) at
Defendants Andrew Carey and Mark Weiner were, respectively,
Storz Management's Chief Executive Officer and Chief
Financial Officer/Chief Operating Officer. (Id. at
2.) Defendants allegedly began misappropriating
plaintiffs' trade secrets and soliciting plaintiffs'
clients in 2016 to establish a competing business.
(Id. at 5-9.) As a result, defendants'
employment was terminated on December 1, 2017. (Id.
to these allegations, the amended complaint alleges causes of
action for violation of the Defend Trade Secrets Act, 18
U.S.C. § 1836 et seq., breach of fiduciary
duty, breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of
good faith and fair dealing, intentional interference with
contractual relations, fraud, unfair competition, and
violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, 18 U.S.C.
§ 1030, et seq. (Id. at 13-20.)
23, 2019, non-parties MHP Holding, LLC, Dudugian & Maxey,
a Law Corporation, Diamond D. Construction, Inc., and Hunter
and Renfro, LLP, filed the pending motions to quash
defendants' subpoenas. (ECF Nos. 74-77.) A Joint
Statement re: Discovery Disagreement was filed on June 14,
2019, with respect to these motions. (ECF No. 83.)
3, 2019, plaintiffs filed the pending motion for sanctions
along with a memorandum and declarations in support. (ECF
Nos. 78-82.) Defendants filed a declaration and opposition to
the motion for sanctions on June 14, 2019. (ECF Nos. 84-85.)
Plaintiffs filed a reply on June 19, 2019, and a notice of
errata on June 20, 2019. (ECF Nos. 86 & 87.)
Nonparties' Motions to Quash
Rule of Civil Procedure 45 governs discovery of non-parties
by subpoena.” In re Subpoena of DJO, LLC, 295
F.R.D. 494, 497 (S.D. Cal. 2014). Rule 45 provides that
“[o]n timely motion, the court for the district where
compliance is required must quash or modify a subpoena that .
. . subjects a person to undue burden.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
45(d)(3)(A)(iv). In re Subpoena of DJO, LLC, 295
F.R.D. 494, 497 (S.D. Cal. 2014) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 45).
evaluation of undue burden requires the court to weigh the
burden to the subpoenaed party against the value of the
information to the serving party. Whether a subpoena imposes
an “undue burden” depends upon “such
factors as relevance, the need of the party for the
documents, the breadth of the document request, the time
period covered by it, the particularity with which the
documents are described and the burden imposed.”
Travelers Indem. Co. v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co.,
228 F.R.D. 111, 113 (D. Conn. 2005) (quoting U.S. v.
International Business Machines Corp., 83 F.R.D. 97, 104
(D.C. N.Y. 1979)). “[C]oncern for the unwanted burden
thrust upon non-parties is a factor entitled to special
weight in evaluating the balance of competing needs.”
Cusumano v. Microsoft Corp., 162 F.3d 708, 717 (1st
Cir. 1998). Additionally, “[a] court may . . . impose
sanctions when a party issues a subpoena in bad faith, for an
improper purpose, or in a manner inconsistent with existing
law.” Legal Voice v. Stormans Inc., 738 F.3d
1178, 1185 (9th Cir. 2013).
burden of persuasion in a motion to quash a subpoena issued
in the course of civil litigation is borne by the
movant.” Concord Boat Corp. v. Brunswick
Corp., 169 F.R.D. 44, 48 (S.D. N.Y. 1996); see also
Moon v. SCP Pool Corp., 232 F.R.D. 633, 637 (C.D. Cal.
2005) (“the party who moves to quash a subpoena has the
‘burden of persuasion'”).
joint statement asserts the following three arguments in
support of the motions to quash the subpoenas. Those arguments
fail to satisfy the applicable burden as articulated below.
The motions to quash will, therefore be denied.
Improper Purpose/Should Have Been ...