In SCR-Tech LLC v. Evonik Energy Services LLC, No. 08 CVS 16632 (N.C. Super. Ct. Dec. 31, 2014), the defendants argued that the plaintiff should bear half of the estimated $140,545 cost of producing backup tapes.  The court applied the state law equivalent of Fed. R. Civ. P. 26, which tracks the federal rule.  After noting that cost shifting should only be considered when electronic discovery imposes an undue burden on the responding party, the court articulated three factors to determine whether cost shifting is appropriate:  (a) whether the discovery sought is cumulative or duplicative; (b) whether the seeking party has had an opportunity to obtain the information by other means; and (c) whether the cost is unduly expensive, considering the amount in controversy, the limitations on the parties’ resources, and the importance of the issues at stake in the litigation.  The court found that it would be in a better position to evaluate those factors after defendants’ production.  Accordingly, the court held that the plaintiff would be required to advance half of the estimated cost if it wanted the defendants to produce the tapes, but the court would determine the final cost allocation “upon presentation as to the utility of the search measured by the degree of non-duplicative potentially relevant information produced.”