United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division
JAMES A. MINYARD, Plaintiff,
ERIK A. HOOKS, et al., Defendants.
D. WHITNEY, CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
MATTER comes before the Court on pro se
Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery, (Doc. No. 48),
Defendants' Motions for Extension of the Dispositive
Motion Deadline, (Doc. Nos. 50, 53), and Plaintiff's
“Motion for a Ni-Hil-di-cit Judgment and Summary
Judgment, ” (Doc. No. 52).
rules of discovery are to be accorded broad and liberal
construction. See Herbert v. Lando, 441 U.S. 153,
177 (1979); Hickman v. Taylor, 329 U.S. 495, 507
(1947). All civil discovery, whether sought from parties or
nonparties, is limited in scope by Rule 26(b)(1) in two
fundamental ways: (1) the matter sought must be
“relevant to any party's claim or defense, ”
and (2) discovery must also be “proportional to the
needs of the case.” Va. Dep't of Corr. v.
Jordan, __ F.3d __, 2019 WL 1562312 at*4 (4th
Cir. April 11, 2019) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b)(1)).
Relevance on its own is not a high bar; the proportionality
requirement “relieves parties from the burden of taking
unreasonable steps to ferret out every relevant
document.” Id. Whether to grant or deny a
motion to compel is generally left within the district
court's broad discretion. Id.
alleges that Defendants have failed to produce documents that
satisfy his discovery requests, that an attempt to resolve
the dispute informally has failed, that Defendants'
objections to the discovery requests have been waived by
Defendants' failure to timely assert them, and that
Defendants' objections are meritless. In his
“Motion for a Ni-Hil-di-cit…” Plaintiff
appears to ask the Court to grant the Motion to Compel
because Defendants have failed to respond to the
Motion to Compel does not contain a certificate of service.
See Fed.R.Civ.P. 5(a)(1)(D) (requiring written
motions, except one that may be heard ex parte, to
be served on every party). In a Letter attached to the
“Motion for a Ni-Hil-di-cit, ” Plaintiff appears
to suggest that he has been relying on the Court to serve
Defendants with his Motions. See (Doc. No. 52-1 at
1) (asking the Court to send Defendants a copy of the
“Ni-Hi-di-cit” Motion and his Response in
opposition to Defendants' February 24, 2019 Motion for
Extension of Time). Accordingly, the “Motion for a
Ni-Hil-di-cit, ” will be denied and Defendants will be
ordered to file a Response to Plaintiff's Motion to
Compel within 14 days of this Order.
scheduling order may be modified “only for good cause
and with the judge's consent.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
16(b)(4). “Good cause” means that
“scheduling deadlines cannot be met despite a
party's diligent efforts.” Dilmar Oil Co. v.
Federated Mut. Ins. Co., 986 F.Supp. 959, 980 (D.S.C.
1997) (citations omitted). In deciding whether additional
discovery is appropriate, courts have considered the
following factors: whether trial is imminent; whether the
request to reopen discovery is opposed; whether the
non-moving party would be prejudiced; whether the moving
party was diligent during the discovery period; the
foreseeability of the request based on the time line set
forth by the court; and the likelihood that the discovery
will lead to relevant evidence. See Smith v.
United States, 834 F.2d 166, 169 (10th Cir.
1987); Chester v. Adams Auto Wash, Inc., 2015 WL
9222893 at *2 (E.D. N.C. Dec. 17, 2015).
have filed two Motions seeking to extend the dispositive
motion deadline, arguing that an extension of time is needed
due to Superintendent Hernandez's leave from work and
counsel's heavy workload. Plaintiff objects, arguing that
counsel has shown disrespect for the Court and bad faith by
failing to respond to Plaintiffs motions and letters.
See (Doc. No. 51). The first Motion for Extension of
Time will be dismissed as moot and the second Motion for
Extension of Time will be granted, for good cause shown,
until May 28, 2019. No. further extensions will be granted
except on a showing of extraordinary circumstances.
IS, THEREFORE, ORDERED that
1. Defendants' first Motion for Extension of the
Dispositive Motion Deadline, (Doc. No. 50), is
DENIED as moot.
2. Defendants' second Motion for Extension of the
Dispositive Motion Deadline, (Doc. No. 53), is
GRANTED until May 28, 2019.
3. Plaintiff s “Motion for a Ni-Hil-di-cit Judgment and
Summary Judgment, ” (Doc. No. 52), is
4. Defendants shall file a Response within 14
days of this Order showing cause why Plaintiffs
Motion to Compel, (Doc. No. 48), should not be granted.