United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, South Bend Division
OPINION AND ORDER
JOHN E. MARTIN, MAGISTRATE JUDGE
This matter is before the Court on a Verified Motion for Sanctions for Plaintiff’s Discovery Violations Pursuant to Rule 37 [DE 20], filed by Defendant on March 27, 2015, and a Joint Motion to Continue Discovery Deadline [DE 21], filed by the parties on April 24, 2015. Plaintiff filed a response to the Motion for Sanctions on April 28, 2015, and on the same day Defendant filed a reply.
Defendant requests that Plaintiff be sanctioned for failure to timely provide initial disclosures to Defendant and for false statements made about that failure. Plaintiff argues that the initial disclosures were timely prepared, that they were provided to Defendant as soon as Plaintiff was made aware that they had not been received, that no false statements were made, and that sanctions are unwarranted.
A federal court has the inherent authority “‘to fashion an appropriate sanction for conduct which abuses the judicial process, ’ including the ‘particularly severe sanction’ of dismissal.” Abner v. Kendall v. Scott Mem’l Hosp., 634 F.3d 962, 964 (7th Cir. 2011) (quoting Chambers v. NASCO, Inc., 501 U.S. 32, 44-45 (1991)). Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(c)(1) provides:
If a party fails to provide information or identify a witness as required by Rule 26(a) or (e), the party is not allowed to use that information or witness to supply evidence on a motion, at a hearing, or at a trial, unless the failure was substantially justified or is harmless. In addition to or instead of this sanction, the court, on motion and after giving an opportunity to be heard:
(A) may order payment of the reasonable expenses, including attorney’s fees, caused by the failure;
(B) may inform the jury of the party’s failure; and
(C) may impose other appropriate sanctions, including any of the orders listed in Rule 37(b)(2)(A)(i)-(vi).
Fed. R. Civ. P. 37(c)(1). The additional sanctions described in Rule 37(b)(2)(A)(i)-(vi) include:
(i) directing that the matters embraced in the order or other designated facts be taken as established for purposes of the action, as the prevailing party claims;
(ii) prohibiting the disobedient party from supporting or opposing designated claims or defenses, or from introducing designated matters in evidence;
(iii) striking pleadings in whole or in part;
(iv) staying further proceedings until the order is obeyed;
(v) dismissing the action or proceeding in ...