Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Texas Roadhouse, Inc. v. Texas Corral Restaurants, Inc.

United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division

May 10, 2017

TEXAS ROADHOUSE, INC., et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
TEXAS CORRAL RESTAURANTS, INC., et al., Defendants.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          PAUL R. CHERRY, MAGISTRATE JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

         This matter is before the Court on a Defendants' Motion to Compel Discovery Compliance [DE 156] filed on February 7, 2017, by Defendants Texas Corral Restaurants, Inc., Texcor, Inc., Texas Corral Restaurant II, Inc., T.C. of Michigan City, Inc., T.C. of Kalamazoo, Inc., Chicago Roadhouse Concepts, LLC, T.C. of Oak Lawn, Inc., T.C. of Harwood Heights, Inc., Texas Corral Incorporated, Martinsville, Corral, Inc., and Paul Switzer. Plaintiffs Texas Roadhouse, Inc. and Texas Roadhouse Delaware LLC filed a response on February 21, 2017. Defendants filed a reply on February 28, 2017.

         This litigation is currently pending on Plaintiffs' Second Amended Complaint. In that pleading, Plaintiffs bring claims of trade dress infringement in violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a) and common law; trademark infringement in violation of 15 U.S.C. §§ 1114 and 1125(a)(1), enacted state laws of Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan, and common law; deceptive trade practices in violation of Illinois state law; copyright infringement in violation of 17 U.S.C. § 101 et seq.; and unfair competition in violation of common law.

         Defendants ask the Court to compel Plaintiffs to produce trade dress evidence, franchise agreements, site selection plans and consumer and market research, the identity of Texas Roadhouse's suppliers of its trade dress fixtures, and detailed profit and loss financial information for each Texas Roadhouse store. Defendants also request that they be awarded their reasonable attorneys' fees incurred in bringing the instant motion.

         ANALYSIS

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(b)(1) sets forth the scope of discovery for this cause of action. A party 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 the 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.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1). A party may seek an order compelling discovery when an opposing party fails to respond to discovery requests or has provided evasive or incomplete responses. Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a). The burden is on the objecting party to show why a particular discovery request is improper. Medical Assurance Co. v. Weinberger, 295 F.R.D. 176, 181 (N.D. Ind. 2013) (quoting Kodish v. Oakbrook Terrace Fire Prot. Dist., 235 F.R.D. 447, 450 (N.D. Ill. 2006)).

         Defendants ask the Court to compel Plaintiffs to answer interrogatories and produce documents in five categories: trade dress evidence, franchise agreements, site selection plans and consumer and market research, identification of Plaintiffs' suppliers of trade dress fixtures, and detailed profit and loss financial information for each Texas Roadhouse store. Plaintiffs, in response, argue that Defendants failed to comply with Northern District of Indiana Local Rule 37-1 and that Defendants' discovery requests are unduly broad and too burdensome. The parties devote most of their briefs to argument regarding Rule 37-1 and discovery of Plaintiffs' trade dress evidence. The Court will address each category below, beginning with Rule 37-1 and trade dress evidence.

         A. Local Rule 37-1

         Plaintiffs argue that Defendants' Motion to Compel is premature because Defendants did not comply with Northern District of Indiana Local Rule 37-1's requirement to certify that the filing party conferred in good faith or attempted to confer with the other affected parties in an effort to resolve the matter raised in a motion to compel without court action.

         Defendants' counsel filed a certification in which she certified that counsel first began communicating regarding the instant discovery disputes on October 24, 2016. Defendants' counsel sent discovery deficiency letters on October 24, 2016, December 22, 2016, and January 16, 2017. On November 7, 2016, November 22, 2016, and January 26, 2017, counsel for the parties held telephone conferences on the matter.

         A fourth telephone conference was scheduled for February 2, 2017. That conference was never held. On February 1, 2017, Plaintiffs' counsel sent Defendants' counsel an email clarifying Plaintiffs' position regarding the discovery at issue, specifically which restaurants it was choosing to provide discovery on and why. In light of this email, Defendants cancelled the February 2, 2017 teleconference.

         Plaintiffs argue that the instant motion should be denied because Defendants failed to confer in good faith. The Court does not so find. The certification and exhibits presented to the Court on this matter show adequate discussion between the parties beginning on October 24, 2016, and the parties' ultimate arrival at an impasse on February 1, 2017. Defendants conferred ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.