In Miller v. York Risk Servs. Grp., No. 2:13-cv-1419 JWS (D. Ariz. Apr. 15, 2014), a federal district court denied plaintiffs’ Motion To Compel the defendant to participate in a Rule 30(b)(6) deposition regarding the manner and methods it used to store and maintain electronically stored information.
The plaintiffs contended that starting with discovery of the manner and means by which the defendant stored ESI would allow plaintiffs to tailor their subsequent discovery requests. In a short opinion issued without oral argument, the court rejected this argument, concluding that “such an inquiry puts the cart before the horse and likely will increase, rather than decrease, discovery disputes.” Instead, the court reasoned, the parties should begin with inquiries seeking substantive information. If the defendant then asserted that retrieval would be unduly burdensome, the court allowed, it might then be appropriate to conduct a deposition of the type sought by the plaintiffs.