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Kitchen v. Corizon Health Inc.

United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division

May 29, 2018

Michael Andrew Kitchen, Plaintiff,
v.
Corizon Health Inc., et al., Defendants.

          OPINION

          Honorable Paul L. Maloney United States District Judge.

         This matter is before the Court on a No. of distinct but interrelated motions. First, Plaintiff Michael Kitchen filed a motion for reconsideration of the Court's dismissal of his state law claims against Defendant Corey Grahn. (ECF No. 165).

         Then, Defendants Grahn and Corizon Health Incorporated filed a motion to dismiss Plaintiff's claims against them for failure to comply with the Court's discovery orders. (ECF No. 181).[1] The matter was referred to the magistrate judge, who issued an R & R recommending that the motion be granted. (ECF No. 200.) Plaintiff filed objections (ECF No. 205) and a separate motion for an evidentiary hearing on his objections. (ECF No. 207.)

         Plaintiff also appeals the magistrate judge's orders granting the Corizon Defendants' motion to quash Plaintiff's subpoena for discovery and denying his motion to enforce the subpoena. (ECF No. 206.)

         I.

         Orders of magistrate judges on non-dispositive matters can be appealed under 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A). See also W.D. Mich. LCivR 72.3(a). Legal conclusions are set aside if they are contrary to law. United States v. Curtis, 237 F.3d 598, 603 (6th Cir. 2001) (citing United States v. Raddatz, 447 U.S. 667, 673 (1980).

         The Court is required to make a de novo determination of those portions of the R & R to which specific objections have been made, and may accept, reject, or modify any or all of the Magistrate Judge's findings or recommendations. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b). “[A] general objection to a magistrate's report, which fails to specify the issues of contention, does not satisfy the requirement that an objection be filed. The objections must be clear enough to enable the district court to discern those issues that are dispositive and contentious.” Miller v. Currie, 50 F.3d 373, 380 (6th Cir. 1995).

         II.

         The Court will first take up Plaintiff's objections to the R & R because, if adopted, Defendant Grahn will be dismissed, and the other discovery-related disputes that remain outstanding will become moot because neither Corizon Health Incorporated nor Grahn will be parties to the action.

         On November 10, 2017, the magistrate judge entered an Order requiring Plaintiff to sign a release on or before November 27, 2017 that would grant the Corizon Defendants access to his requested MDOC medical records from September 1, 2013 to the present. (ECF No. 153 at PageID.1680-81.) The Court specifically warned Plaintiff that “if he fail[ed] to comply with any aspect of [the] order, ” the Court would issue an R & R recommending dismissal of his claims against the Corizon Defendants. (Id.)

         Plaintiff's next step was to complete the release granting Corizon acces to the court-ordered medical records. But that's not quite what happened.

         Plaintiff unilaterally determined that the scope of the release should not include his mental health records, so he added a sentence stating, “This authorization does not include the release of any Mental Health records, or any psychological reports or records contained with Medical Records, pertaining to Michael A. Kitchen (#189265).” Plaintiff's action plainly contradicted the Court's prior order that required the release of both medical and mental health records, and the instruction that Plaintiff “was not to make any modifications to the scope of the release.” (ECF No. 153 at PageID.1680.)

         Plaintiff also inserted a second condition into the release. He wrote, “[T]his request is valid only if accompanied by an order signed by District Judge Paul L. Maloney ordering the release ...


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