Order Compelling Discovery in Employment Discrimination Case Affirmed

In O’Halloran v. Metropolitan Transp. Auth., 2019 NY Slip Op 01318 (App. Div. 1st Dept. Feb. 21, 2019), an employment discrimination case, the Appellate Division, First Department unanimously affirmed the lower court’s decision granting plaintiff’s motion (pursuant to CPLR 3124) compelling the defendant to provide certain discovery.

Citing New York CPLR 3101(a) and relevant case law, the court explained:

The court providently exercised its discretion in granting in part plaintiff’s motion to compel discovery and ordering defendants to run searches of electronic mailboxes of defendants’ employees and to produce those documents responsive to plaintiffs’ requests … . The record demonstrates that plaintiff’s requests seek material and necessary information, and that her search terms, all of which were to be combined with her name or nickname or the name or nickname of a coworker she alleges was discriminated or retaliated against on similar grounds, would result in the disclosure of relevant evidence, and are reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of relevant information.

Plaintiff’s second Supplemental Request for Production of Documents, dated November 30, 2017, seeking all complaints, discrimination-related or not, involving defendant George Menduina’s conduct from 2010 to present, sought information material and necessary to this particular lawsuit because such information was relevant not only to whether Menduina, plaintiff’s supervisor, discriminated against plaintiff, but also to whether Menduina was more qualified than plaintiff to hold the very position that plaintiff alleges she was denied for discriminatory reasons.