This can only be one of those “SLABBED reports, you decide” posts – assuming, of course, I’ve not outgrown yet another pair of reading glasses.
Yesterday’s docket in the Branch Consultants’ qui tam case noted, “the motion to stay the the Branch defendants’ Motion to Adjourn ESI Depositions for Forty-Five Days…was set for hearing…and would be decided by the magistrate judge”. As I recall, the hearing was set for the 15th of December.
Needless to say, I was surprised to find a related Order from Judge Vance when I checked the docket tonight:
Defendants Liberty Mutual, Standard Fire, Allstate, and Pilot move to adjourn the scheduled ESI depositions for forty-five days. The motion is DENIED. The Court has already considered this issue and sees no reason to change its previous order. Defendants’ motion to expedite is DENIED AS MOOT. (emphasis added)
I gather the first sentence in the defendant’s motion to adjourn the ESI depositions got on Judge Vance’s last nerve:
Defendants Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Company (“Liberty Mutual”), The Standard Fire Insurance Company (“Standard Fire”), Allstate Insurance Company (“Allstate”), and Pilot Catastrophe Services, Inc. (“Pilot”) move the Court to adjourn the ESI depositions for forty-five days to allow the Court to consider whether it has jurisdiction over this matter.
Something certainly prompted her to make it clear that she had jurisdiction unless she decided otherwise – and, clearly, that she won’t decided until after the date of the last deposition on the schedule.