United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
KIMBERLEE KNOX, KAYLA BRATCHER on behalf of themselves and all other persons similarly situated, known and unknown, Plaintiffs,
JONES GROUP, AVON WINGS, LLC doing business as BUFFALO WILD WINGS, BW WINGS MANAGEMENT LLC, COLDWATER WINGS, LLC, COLONIAL WINGS, LLC, COOL WINGS, LLC, DANVILLE WINGS II, LLC, GREENCASTLE WINGS, LLC, MECHANICSVILLE WINGS, LLC, SHELBYVILLE WINGS, LLC, VINCENNES WINGS, LLC, Defendants.
ORDER ON DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR PARTIAL
Baker, United States Magistrate Judge.
case is before the Court on Defendants' motion for
reconsideration [Filing No. 81] of this Court's September
16, 2016, order granting Plaintiff's motion to compel.
[Filing No. 80.] For reasons explained below, the Court
corrects two factual errors, finds no legal error, and
clarifies the information Defendants must produce. However,
this order provides Defendants with no substantive relief.
motion first points out that the Court erred in stating that
Defendants failed to produce the addresses or phone numbers
for 40 individual witnesses. Upon reconsideration, the Court
acknowledges that Defendants' initial disclosures
provided this contact information. [Filing No. 56-1.] The
first sentence on page 22 should have only stated, “It
is undisputed that Defendants identified three categories of
witnesses, but failed to produce their names, addresses, or
phone numbers.” [Filing No. 80, at ECF p. 22.]
Defendants' motion points out that the Court erred in
stating that Defendants' response to Plaintiffs'
motion to compel was untimely. On reconsideration, the Court
acknowledges that Defendants' brief was indeed timely.
However, timeliness was not the basis of the Court's
decision to grant Plaintiffs' motion to compel. The basis
of the Court's decision was that certification entitled
Plaintiffs to the information. The perceived untimeliness of
Defendants' brief was merely further support for the
order, as the Court stated. [Filing No. 80, at ECF p. 22.]
next argue that the Court erred in stating Defendants'
objection was mooted by the conditional certification.
Defendants allege the Court failed to consider all aspects of
their objection. On reconsideration, the Court disagrees. All
aspects of Defendants' objection were considered,
including whether Defendants were required to identify
individuals within the categories of witnesses. “Merely
because a fact or argument has not been explicitly laid out
does not mean that it has not been given serious
consideration by the court.” McDonald v. Vill. of
Winnetka, 371 F.3d 992, 994 (7th Cir. 2004). As the
September 16 order reflects, once the Court certified the
action, Defendants were required to identify those
individuals. This leads to the final issue on
reconsideration: clarification of whether all
individuals need to be identified.
initial disclosures provided contact information for 40
individual witnesses and identified four categories of
witnesses: (1) general managers at the 34 restaurants, (2)
managers at the 34 restaurants, (3) all opt-in Plaintiffs,
and (4) all front-of-house employees and kitchen staff that
may have discoverable information. [Filing No. 56-1.] The
opt-in Plaintiffs will be identified as they consent to join
this action. However, there was no content for the remaining
three categories of witnesses. In certifying this action, the
Court ordered Defendants to “supplement their initial
disclosures within 30 days by producing the names, addresses,
and phone numbers for the witnesses identified in their
initial disclosures.” [Filing No. 80, at ECF p. 22.]
ask the Court for clarification and guidance for whom they
must provide contact information. Defendants highlight that
they did not use the word “all, ” and explain
that these categories preserve their right to supplement
initial disclosures. Defendants contend they are therefore
uncertain whether they must identify and disclose the contact
information for all individuals belonging to these
categories, or whether disclosure should be narrowed, for
example, by knowledge, time period, defenses, or discovery.
Notably, Defendants pose this question to the Court without
offering background information or reasons for narrowing
disclosures. Certainly Defendants created these placeholder
categories with individuals in mind. Who did Defendants
intend to include? Who do Defendants want to exclude? The
answers are unclear. The Court did not create these
categories and the Court will not narrow these categories by
guessing at the answers. Accordingly, the Court instructs
Defendants to identify and disclose the contact information
for all individuals belonging to their categories.
standard of relevance applied in discovery is very broad, and
the Court has broad discretion in matters relating to
discovery. Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1); Patterson
v. Avery Dennison Corp., 281 F.3d 676, 681 (7th Cir.
2002). So too, the Court takes a broad view of
Defendants' categories. Upon reconsideration, the Court
clarifies that Defendants must identify (1) all
general managers at the 34 restaurants, (2) all
managers at the 34 restaurants, and (3) all
front-of-house employees and kitchen staff that may have
above reasons, Defendants' motion for partial
reconsideration [ Filing No. 81] is granted in part.
Defendants' response [Filing No. 61] was timely
and 40 individual witnesses were identified in the initial
disclosures. All aspects of Defendants' objection were
considered in the Court's prior ruling. The Court
clarifies that Defendants must identify all individuals that
belong in the three categories of ...