United States District Court, E.D. North Carolina, Western Division
E. Gates United States Magistrate Judge.
case comes before the court on the motion (D.E. 18) filed by
defendant Altec, Inc. ("defendant") to compel
plaintiff Leroy Coleman, Jr. ("plaintiff') to appear
for his deposition currently scheduled for 13 October 2017.
No opposition to the motion has been filed. For the reasons
set forth below, the motion will be allowed.
who is proceeding pro se, commenced this employment
discrimination action against defendant, alleging that
defendant discriminated against him on the basis of his race
and subjected him to a hostile work environment. See
generally Compl. (D.E. 5). Defendant denies the material
allegations of plaintiffs complaint. See generally
Def.'s Ans. (D.E. 8).
did not appear for his previously noticed deposition on 19
September 2017. Robin Shea Declaration (D.E. 19-1) ¶ 12.
The deposition has been rescheduled for 13 October 2017, the
last day of discovery pursuant to the Scheduling Order (D.E.
13) entered in this case, and defendant seeks a court order
compelling plaintiffs attendance. Id. ¶¶
Applicable Legal Principles
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure enable parties to obtain
information by serving requests for discovery on each other,
including a notice of deposition. See generally Fed.
R. Civ. P. 26-37. Rule 26 provides for a broad scope of
Parties may obtain discovery regarding any nonprivileged
matter that is relevant to. any party's claim or defense
and proportional to the needs of the case, considering the
importance of the issues at stake in the action, the amount
in controversy, the parties' relative access to relevant
information, the parties' resources, the importance of
the discovery in resolving the issues, and whether the burden
or expense of the proposed discovery outweighs its likely
benefit. Information within this scope of discovery need not
be admissible in evidence to be discoverable.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1).
district court has broad discretion in determining relevance
for discovery purposes. Seaside Farm, Inc. v. United
States, 842 F.3d 853, 860 (4th Cir. 2016); Watson v.
Lowcountry Red Cross, 974 F.2d 482, 489 (4th Cir. 1992).
The party resisting discovery bears the burden of
establishing the legitimacy of its objections. Eramo v.
Rolling Stone LLC, 314 F.R.D. 205, 209 (W.D. Va. 2016)
("[T]he party or person resisting discovery, not the
party moving to compel discovery, bears the burden of
persuasion." (quoting Kinetic Concepts, Inc. v.
ConvaTec Inc., 268 F.R.D. 226, 243 (M.D. N.C. 2010))).
governs depositions. Fed.R.Civ.P. 30. It provides that
"[a] party may, by oral questions, depose any person,
including a party, without leave of court except as provided
in Rule 30(a)(2). The deponent's attendance may be
compelled by subpoena under Rule 45." Fed.R.Civ.P.
30(a)(1). A party intending to depose an individual; must
give reasonable written notice to all parties, stating the
time and place of the deposition. Fed.R.Civ.P. 30(b). Rule 30
provides that the court may impose sanctions, including
attorney's fees or expenses, on any person who
"impedes, delays, or frustrates the fair examination of
the deponent." Fed.R.Civ.P. 30 (d)(2)
allows for the filing of a motion to compel a party's
attendance at a deposition. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
37(d). Rule 37 permits a court to order sanctions if "a
party . . . fails, after being served with proper notice, to
appear for that person's deposition." Fed.R.Civ.P.
noted, by its motion, defendant seeks an order compelling
plaintiffs attendance at his own deposition scheduled for 13
October 2017. Having failed to respond to defendant's
motion, plaintiff does not contest the relief defendant seeks
or the grounds advanced by defendant for it. Irrespective of
the unopposed nature of the motion, the court finds that
plaintiff has failed to comply with his discovery obligations