Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Romanyk Consulting Corp. v. Eba Ernest Bland Associates, Pc

United States District Court, Fourth Circuit

June 25, 2013

ROMANYK CONSULTING CORP., Plaintiff,
v.
EBA ERNEST BLAND ASSOCIATES, P.C., Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

CHARLES B. DAY, Magistrate Judge.

Before this Court are Defendant EBA Ernest Bland Associates, PC's Motion To Compel Discovery Responses From Romanyk Consulting Corporation ("Defendant's Motion to Compel") (ECF No. 46) and Plaintiff Romanyk Consulting Corp's Motion To Strike EBA Ernest Bland Associates, P.C.'s Reply In Support Of Its Motion To Compel And Incorporated Memorandum Of Points And Authorities ("Motion to Strike") (ECF No. 54). The Court has reviewed the motions, related memoranda, and applicable law. No hearing is deemed necessary. See Local Rule 105.6 (D. Md.). For the reasons presented below, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Motion to Compel and DENIES Plaintiff's Motion to Strike.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

Plaintiff brought this action for breach of contract alleging that Defendant did not pay it money due under the termination clause of their contract, known herein as the Master Task Order Agreement ("MTOA"). Compl. ¶ 1 (ECF No. 5). Defendant is a prime contractor to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs ("the VA") providing architectural and master planning services. Def.'s Br. 1-2 (ECF No. 46-1). On September 30, 2011, Plaintiff and Defendant entered into the MTOA in which Plaintiff agreed to provide architectural and data services for the VA contract as a subcontractor. Id. ; Answer Ex. 1 (ECF No. 13). The MTOA incorporated Plaintiff's prior itemized proposal of the specific tasks it would perform and the time and expense it expected to incur. Def.'s Br. 2; Answer Ex. 5 ¶ 14. The termination clause of the MTOA provided that if Plaintiff's performance were to be suspended, cancelled, or terminated, Defendant would compensate it for all work completed or partially completed "on the basis of the fee schedule." Answer Ex. 5 ¶ 11. On February 17, 2012, Defendant terminated Plaintiff's performance because it allegedly performed substandard, incomplete, or unprofessional work. Def.'s Br. 2-3. Defendant tendered a final payment for the work that Plaintiff performed prior to the termination, but that payment was rejected by Plaintiff. Def.'s Br. 3; Pl.'s Opp. Br. 4 (ECF No. 51-2). Plaintiff does not allege in its Complaint that the termination was improper, but rather that Defendant failed to compensate it for the full amount owed under the termination clause of the MTOA. Compl. ¶ 4. Defendant has brought counterclaims for breach of contract, tortious interference with contract, and the use of recordings illegal under Maryland law. Answer 11-16.

During discovery, Defendant propounded the following as "Interrogatory No. 2":

Describe the actual amount of time and money YOU expended on the VISN 1 PROJECT for EBA, including but not limited to, IDENTIFYING the following:
a) the total number of PERSONS that actually worked on the project;
b) the total amount of labor hours YOU actually expended on the project;
c) the total amount of travel expenses YOU actually incurred on the project; and
d) the total amount of man hours YOU actually expended on travel for the project (including but not limited to time spent traveling to, from, or attending meetings).

Def.'s Mot. Ex. A (ECF No. 46-3). Plaintiff responded and objected to parts b), c), and d) of Interrogatory No. 2 as irrelevant, overly broad, and unduly burdensome, asking for information already within Defendant's control, and multiplying the number of interrogatories so as to exceed the permissible amount. Def.'s Mot. Ex. B (ECF No. 46-4). On February 1, 2013, Defendant's counsel sent a letter to Plaintiff's counsel noting its disagreement with the bases for Plaintiff's objections, and also addressing other discovery disputes which the parties have since resolved. Def.'s Mot. Ex. C (ECF No. 46-5). Plaintiff responded in a letter on February 21, 2013. Def.'s Mot. Ex. D (ECF No. 46-6). Defendant replied by letter on March 11, 2013, requesting a telephonic meet and confer. Def.'s Mot. Ex. E (ECF No. 46-7). On March 20, 2013, the parties held the telephonic conference and resolved several outstanding discovery issues. Def.'s Mot. Ex. F (ECF No. 46-8). On March 28, 2013, Plaintiff served amended responses to Defendant's interrogatories but lodged the same objection to Interrogatory No. 2 as previously. Def.'s Mot. Ex. H (ECF No. 46-10). On April 1, 2013, Defendant sent Plaintiff an additional email seeking responses to Interrogatory No. 2. Def.'s Mot. Ex. I (ECF No. 46-11). Plaintiff responded that it would rest on its objections as previously stated. Def.'s Mot. Ex. J (ECF No. 46-12). Defendant moves for the Court to compel Plaintiff to provide responses to Interrogatory No. 2.

DISCUSSION

I. Plaintiff's Motion To Strike For Noncompliance With Local Role 104.8 Is Denied In The Interest of Judicial Efficiency.

Plaintiff asks the Court to strike Defendant's Motion to Compel because it failed to follow the procedure of Local Rule 104.8 (D. Md.). Rule 104.8 sets the procedures for litigating a motion to compel answers to interrogatories.[1] Id. The Rule requires that the party seeking to compel responses first serve its motion to compel on the opposing party without filing it with the court. Rule 104.8(a). The opposing party is to serve (but not file) its response within fourteen (14) days, and the moving party shall then serve (but not file) its reply within fourteen (14) days. Id. After all of the papers have been served, the parties must hold the conference of counsel required for all discovery disputes. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.