Friday, October 31, 2014

No Deposition of In-House Litigation Counsel

The court granted defendant's motion for protective order to preclude the deposition of its in-house litigation counsel. "[The deponent], though in-house counsel, is unquestionably an active member of [defendant's] litigation team in both the trade dress case and in this patent litigation, and [plaintiff's] request to take her deposition invokes the [Eighth Circuit's] concern of protecting against the discovery of trial or litigation strategy. . . . Information related to the indemnity emails is arguably both relevant and non privileged. However, [plaintiff] failed to prove that no other means exist to obtain the information, and that such information is crucial to its preparation of the case. . . . Further, permitting the deposition of [defense counsel] would require navigating an invisible line between her dealings with business affairs and her role as litigation counsel, and would risk exposing [defendant's] litigation strategy in this case."

McAirlaids, Inc. v. Kimberly-Clark Corporation et al, 7-13-cv-00193 (VAWD October 29, 2014, Order) (Ballou, M.J.)

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