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Honeywell International, Inc. v. Western Support Group

United States District Court, Ninth Circuit

May 29, 2013

Honeywell International, Inc., Plaintiff,
v.
Western Support Group; Douglas C. Harmon; and Cynthia A. Harmon, Defendants.

ORDER

JAMES A. TEILBORG, Senior District Judge.

On April 24, 2013, this Court held a hearing on a discovery dispute between Plaintiff and Defendants. The discovery dispute concerned Defendants' failure to respond to requests for production served by Plaintiff. Defendants objected to the requests for production on the basis that the requests sought material outside the scope of the Complaint. After hearing full argument on this issue, the Court overruled Defendants' objections and ordered Defendants to respond to the requests for production. During the hearing, the Court also denied Defendants' motion to file a second motion for summary judgment in this case.

Defendants now move for reconsideration of this Court's rulings claiming that those rulings were the "result of clear error" and were "manifestly unjust."[1] According to Defendants, the Court erred by: (1) considering a discovery dispute[2] at a hearing without allowing Defendants to file written briefs containing the basis of their objections to the requests for production; (2) failing to follow Local Rule 37.1's "contemplation" that a written motion to compel will be allowed; (3) allowing Plaintiff discovery that it is not entitled to; (4) overruling Defendants' objection "without allowing it to brief the dispute, fully presenting [sic] its legal authority to the court, as contemplated by the local and federal rules;" (Doc. 52 at 3) and (5) exercising its discretion in denying a second motion for summary judgment before Defendants were given a chance to file a reply in support of their motion for leave to file a motion for summary judgment.

Defendants request reconsideration of this Court's rulings pursuant to Local Rule of Civil Procedure 7.2(g).

The Court has discretion to reconsider and vacate a prior order. Barber v. Hawaii, 42 F.3d 1185, 1198 (9th Cir.1994); United States v. Nutri-cology, Inc., 982 F.2d 394, 396 (9th Cir.1992). Motions for reconsideration are disfavored, however, and are not the place for parties to make new arguments not raised in their original briefs. Northwest Acceptance Corp. v. Lynnwood Equip., Inc., 841 F.2d 918, 925-26 (9th Cir. 1988). Nor is reconsideration to be used to ask the Court to rethink what it has already thought. See United States v. Rezzonico, 32 F.Supp.2d 1112, 1116 (D. Ariz. 1998) (citing Above the Belt, Inc. v. Mel Bohannan Roofing, Inc., 99 F.R.D. 99, 101 (E.D. Va. 1983)).

Motorola, Inc. v. J.B. Rodgers Mechanical Contractors, 215 F.R.D. 581, 582-583 (D. Ariz. 2003). When the challenged order is not a final judgment or appealable interlocutory order, the Court will grant a motion for reconsideration if:

(1) There are material differences in fact or law from that presented to the Court and, at the time of the Court's decision, the party moving for reconsideration could not have known of the factual or legal differences through reasonable diligence;
(2) There are new material facts that happened after the Court's decision;
(3) There has been a change in the law that was decided or enacted after the Court's decision; or
(4) The movant makes a convincing showing that the Court failed to consider material facts that were presented to the Court before the Court's decision.
No motion for reconsideration shall repeat in any manner any oral or written argument made in support of or in opposition to the original motion.

Id. at 586; see LRCiv 7.2(g)(1) ("No motion for reconsideration may repeat any oral or written argument made by the movant in support of or in opposition to the motion that resulted in the Order.").

Defendants claim that this Court somehow violated LRCiv 37.1 and other unnamed local and federal rules in not allowing Defendants to submit written briefing regarding the discovery dispute. Defendants fail to point to the portion of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or this Court's local rules that mandates that this Court entertain written briefing on motions to compel. Although Local Rule of Civil Procedure 37.1 describes the applicable format a party must follow when a written motion for an order compelling discovery is filed, nothing in that local rule requires the Court to entertain written briefing. See LRCiv 37.1.[3] Moreover, this Court held a hearing on the discovery dispute and gave Defendants a full opportunity to make their arguments. Although Defendants insist written briefing on this matter is necessary, they have failed to explain why their oral briefing was inadequate.[4]

Moreover, based on Defendants' "additional briefing" in its Motion for Reconsideration, Defendants simply seek to reargue the arguments that they made during the discovery dispute hearing. This is prohibited by LRCiv 7.2(g) and is an improper basis for a motion for reconsideration. See LRCiv 7.2(g)(2); Above the Belt, Inc. v. Mel Bohannon Roofing, Inc., 99 F.R.D. 99, 101 (E.D. Va. 1983) (stating that it is improper for a party to use a ...


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