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State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. v. Elite Health Centers Inc.

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

July 8, 2019

STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY, Plaintiff,
v.
ELITE HEALTH CENTERS, INC., ELITE CHIROPRACTIC, P.C., ELITE REHABILITATION, INC., MIDWEST MEDICAL ASSOCIATES, INC., PURE REHABILITATION, INC., DEREK L. BITTNER, D.C., P.C., MARK A. RADOM, DEREK LAWRENCE BITTNER, D.C., RYAN MATTHEW LUKOWSKI, D.C., MICHAEL P. DRAPLIN, D.C., NOEL H. UPFALL, D.O., MARK J. JUSKA, M.D., SUPERIOR DIAGNOSTICS, INC., CHINTAN DESAI, M.D., MICHAEL J. PALEY, M.D., DEARBORN CENTER FOR PHYSICAL THERAPY, L.L.C., MICHIGAN CENTER FOR PHYSICAL THERAPY, INC., and JAYSON ROSETT Defendants.

          Avern Cohn District Judge.

          ORDER DENYING STATE FARM'S LETTER REQUEST TO FILE A MOTION TO STAY THE CASE (DE 514), EXTENDING THE DISCOVERY DEADLINE FOR DEPOSITIONS ONLY, AND ADJUSTING THE REMAINING SCHEDULING ORDER DATES ACCORDINGLY

          ANTHONY P. PATTI UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         This matter is before the Court for consideration of Plaintiff State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company's (“State Farm's”) June 20, 2019 letter request to move to stay the case pending: (1) a ruling on its motion to compel non-party Michael Morse's response to subpoena; and (2) Morse's document production if the motion is granted (DE 514), and the Elite Defendants', Chintan Desai, M.D.'s and Michael J. Paley, M.D.'s letter responses in opposition (DEs 519, 521, 524). On July 3, 2019, the Court held a telephone conference with counsel for the parties and non-party Michael Morse to address the letter requests.

         State Farm requests leave to move to stay the case, stating that the parties are scheduling 18 depositions to occur before the current August 30, 2019 discovery deadline, including the depositions of four defendants, non-party Morse, and two employees of the Mike Morse Law Firm, but that it wants Morse's documents before taking those depositions. (DE 514.) State Farm also seeks a stay to allow it to consider whether to add parties (presumably Morse) to the case based on documents produced by Morse. (Id.) The Elite Defendants and Defendants Desai and Paley strongly oppose State Farm's request, contending that Morse's document production is not relevant to the issues and claims in this case and that adding Morse or any other person as a party “cannot seriously be entertained by the Court after nearly three years of litigation.” (DEs 519, 521, 524.)

         Upon consideration of the letter requests and the July 3rd telephone conference with counsel for the parties and non-party Morse, State Farm's letter request for leave to move to stay the case is DENIED, as the Court recently issued its opinion and order granting in part and denying in part State Farm's motion to compel Michael Morse to produce documents responsive to subpoena, and ordering production of responsive documents within 30 days (DE 535). Accordingly, a stay of the case is unnecessary. Rather, to address the parties' competing concerns, the Court will extend the fact discovery deadline, currently set for August 30, 2019, an additional 60 days for the limited purpose of taking depositions only, to October 29, 2019. That extension should allow sufficient time for the production and review of responsive documents by Morse, even if that production is temporarily delayed pending an objection to my order. Between the Court's recently issued order on the motion to compel Michael Morse (DE 535) and the 60 day extension given herein for depositions and other deadlines, the bases of the letter request to seek a stay are essentially moot. The remaining scheduling order deadlines otherwise remain as set in DE 410, unless adjusted as set forth below:

Event

Deadline/Date

Fact Discovery (to take depositions only)

October 29, 2019

Plaintiff Expert Reports

December 2, 2019

Defendants Expert Reports

December 31, 2019

Rebuttal Expert Reports

January 16, 2020

Status/Settlement Conference

TBD

Expert Depositions

February 18, 2020

Motions Relating to Experts

March 18, 2020

Dispositive Motions

March 16, 2020

Final Pretrial Conference

April 28, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.

Trial

April/May 2020

         IT ...


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