On 05/16/2017 ALEX AI filed a Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury lawsuit against HOME DEPOT USA INC. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are DENNIS J. LANDIN, CHRISTOPHER K. LUI, DANIEL M. CROWLEY and STEPHEN M. MOLONEY. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Pending - Other Pending
Los Angeles County Superior Courts
Stanley Mosk Courthouse
Los Angeles, California
DENNIS J. LANDIN
CHRISTOPHER K. LUI
DANIEL M. CROWLEY
STEPHEN M. MOLONEY
DOES 1 TO 25
HOME DEPOT U.S.A. INC.
LARSEN SAMANTHA CHRISTINE
LEWIS BRISBOIS BISGAARD & SMITH LLP
FREELAND AMY ROSE
HUGHES TRACY L.
2/26/2021: Informal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts
11/9/2020: Motion to Compel Further Discovery Responses
4/20/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)
9/27/2019: Separate Statement
9/27/2019: Motion to Compel Further Discovery Responses
11/12/2019: Notice - NOTICE NOTICE OF NON-OPPOSITION BY DEFENDANT, HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., TO PLAINTIFF'S EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND RELATED DATES
11/13/2019: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL
11/14/2019: Reply - REPLY DEFENDANT HOME USA, INC.'S REPLY IN SUPPORT OF MOTION TO HAVE HOME DEPOT'S PRODUCED DOCUMENTS RETAIN "CONFIDENTIAL" DESIGNATION PURSUANT TO STIPULATION AND PROTECTIVE ORDER; REQUEST FOR
11/21/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (NUNC PRO TUNC ORDER)
11/21/2019: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore - ORDER APPOINTING COURT APPROVED REPORTER AS OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE GAIL R. DAIDSON, CSR #12823
11/26/2019: Informal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts
11/26/2019: Informal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts
2/19/2019: Ex Parte Application - Ex Parte Application to Continue Trial
9/26/2018: Opposition - to Motion to Strike
8/28/2018: ORDER RE: MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER
8/28/2018: Minute Order -
8/21/2018: DEFENDANT'S REPLY TO PLAINTIFF'S OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER AS TO THE DEPOSITION OF VICTORIA HAMPSON
5/16/2017: CoverSheet -
Hearing06/24/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department 28 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Jury TrialRead MoreRead Less
Hearing06/10/2021 at 10:00 AM in Department 28 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Final Status ConferenceRead MoreRead Less
Docketat 10:00 AM in Department 28, Daniel M. Crowley, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Compel Further Discovery Responses - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by PartyRead MoreRead Less
DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
Docketat 11:00 AM in Department 28, Daniel M. Crowley, Presiding; Informal Discovery Conference (IDC) - HeldRead MoreRead Less
DocketInformal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts; Filed by Alex Ai (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketInformal Discovery Conference; Filed by Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketMinute Order ( (Informal Discovery Conference (IDC))); Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
Docketat 10:00 AM in Department 28, Daniel M. Crowley, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Compel Further Discovery Responses - Not Held - Rescheduled by PartyRead MoreRead Less
DocketMotion to Compel Further Discovery Responses; Filed by Alex Ai (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketOPPOSITION TO EX PARTERead MoreRead Less
DocketMinute OrderRead MoreRead Less
DocketMotion to Quash; Filed by Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketDEFENDANT'S NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION TO QUASH DEPOSITION NOTICE AND FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER AS TO THE DEPOSITION OF VICTORIA HAMPSON (AKA TORI HAMPSON); DECLARATION OF AMY R. FREELAND; [PROPOSEDI] ORDERRead MoreRead Less
DocketNOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION TO STRIKE PORTIONS OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIESRead MoreRead Less
DocketMotion to Strike; Filed by Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. (Defendant); Nevitte Fikry (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketComplaint; Filed by Alex Ai (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketSummons; Filed by Plaintiff/PetitionerRead MoreRead Less
DocketComplaintRead MoreRead Less
Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 4A; Hearing on Ex Parte Application (to Advance Informal Discovery Conference)Read MoreRead Less
Case Number: BC658381 Hearing Date: November 21, 2019 Dept: 4A
Motion for Protective Order
Having considered the moving, opposing, and reply papers, the Court rules as follows.
On May 16, 2017, Plaintiff Alex Ai (“Plaintiff”) filed a complaint against Defendants Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. and Nevitte Fikry alleging premises liability for a metal pipe falling off a shelf and hitting Plaintiff on April 25, 2016.
On June 27, 2018, Plaintiff filed a first amended complaint to allege additional facts.
On October 21, 2019, Defendant Home Depot USA, Inc. filed a motion for a protective order pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 2031.060, subdivision (a).
Trial is set for June 17, 2020.
Defendant Home Depot USA, Inc. (“Moving Defendant”) asks the Court for an order limiting the disclosure of trade secrets and seeking sanctions of $2,600 for being forced to bring its motion for a protective order.
A protective order may be granted on a noticed motion of a party propounded with requests for production. (Code Civ. Proc. §§ 2031.060, subd. (a). The motion must be accompanied by a declaration stating facts showing a “reasonable and good faith attempt” to resolve the matter outside of court. (Ibid.)
The burden is on the moving party to establish good cause exists for protection from unwarranted annoyance, embarrassment, or oppression, or undue burden and expense. (See Code Civ. Proc. §§ 2031.060, subd. (b); Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc. v. Superior Court (1992) 7 Cal.App.4th 1394, 1393.)
After, the party seeking discovery must make a “particularized showing that the information sought is relevant and necessary to the proof of, or defense against, a material element of one or more causes of action presented in the case, and that it is reasonable to conclude that the information sought is essential to a fair resolution of the lawsuit. It is then up to the holder of the privilege to demonstrate any claimed disadvantages of a protective order. Either party may propose or oppose less intrusive alternatives to disclosure of the trade secret, but the burden is upon the trade secret claimant to demonstrate that an alternative to disclosure will not be unduly burdensome to the opposing side and that it will maintain the same fair balance in the litigation that would have been achieved by disclosure.” (Bridgestone, supra, 7 Cal.App.4th at p. 1393.)
A trade secret is “information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, or process that . . . [d]erives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not being generally known to the public or to other persons who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use and . . . [i]s the subject of efforts that are reasonable under the circumstances to maintain its secrecy.” (Civ. Code § 3426.1, subd. (d).)
Moving Defendant argues it has trade secrets in the following five documents: (1) a 3-page asset protection reference guide, (2) a 3-page asset protection sign manual, (3) a 3-page document with department 26 plumbing safety standards, (4) a 1-page document with standards for merchandise on floor or sales level, and a (5) 2-page store readiness checklist. (Motion, pp. 4:24-6:25.) Bradley E. Nesmith, a Senior-Director-Internal Audit and Corporate Compliance for Moving Defendant, submits a declaration in support of the motion. Mr. Nesmith’s declaration consists of an explanation of what Moving Defendant’s standard operating procedures are, the process of developing them, that disclosure would be detrimental, and the procedures that Moving Defendant uses to protect disclosure. (Nesmith Decl., ¶¶ 3-16.)
The Court finds Mr. Nesmith’s declaration fails to show Moving Defendant has trade secrets in the five documents for which Moving Defendant seeks a protective order that would limit disclosure. A glaring defect in this declaration is that it pertains to standard operating procedures, but makes no mention that any of the five documents for which Moving Defendant seeks protection constitute standard operating procedures within the meaning of Mr. Nesmith’s declaration.
Assuming these documents are standard operating procedures, Mr. Nesmith’s declaration fails to show that Moving Defendant derives independent economic value from them not being generally known to the public. Mr. Nesmith conclusorily declares that Moving Defendant has been able to maintain its position in the industry by taking advantage of the experience and know-how of its associates and by investing resources in developing operating procedures, which are embodied in the standard operating procedures. (Nesmith Decl., ¶ 9.) Mr. Nesmith then declares that this advantage would be greatly diminished if the standard operating procedures were disclosed to competitors. (Ibid.) Mr. Nesmith makes no clear statement as to how disclosure of these five particular documents would disadvantage Moving Defendant.
Thus, the motion is DENIED, as is the request for sanctions.
Moving Defendant is ordered to give notice of this ruling.
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