Judge: Gregory Keosian, Case: 20STCV42444, Date: 2023-03-02 Tentative Ruling

Case Number: 20STCV42444    Hearing Date: March 2, 2023    Dept: 61

Plaintiff Gergis R. Ghobrial’s Motion to Compel Further Responses to Requests for Production, Sets One, Two, and Three from Defendant Long Beach Memorial Medical Center is DENIED..


Defendant to give notice.



“Any party may obtain discovery . . . by propounding to any other party to the action written interrogatories to be answered under oath.”  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2030.010(a).) If a propounding party is not satisfied with the response served by a responding party, the former may move the court to compel further interrogatory responses.  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2030.300; Sinaiko Healthcare Consulting, Inc. v. Pacific Healthcare Consultants (2007) 148 Cal.App.4th 390, 403.)  The propounding party must demonstrate that the responses were incomplete, inadequate or evasive, or that the responding party asserted objections that are either without merit or too general.  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2030.300(a)(1)–(3); Sinaiko Healthcare Consulting, Inc., supra, 148 Cal.App.4th at 403.)

A propounding party may demand a responding party to produce documents that are in their possession, custody or control. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.010.) A party may likewise conduct discovery by propounding interrogatories to another party to be answered under oath. (Code Civ. Proc. § 2030.010, subd. (a).) The responding party must respond to the production demand either by complying, by representing that the party lacks the ability to comply, or by objecting to the demand. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.210.) The responding party must respond to the interrogatories by answering or objecting. (Code Civ. Proc. § 2030.210, subd. (a).) If the responding party fails to serve timely responses, the propounding party may move for an order compelling responses to the production demand and interrogatories. (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 2030.290, 2031.300.)


Plaintiff Gergis Ghobrial (Plaintiff) here seeks further responses to Requests for Production, Sets One through Three, No. 1–6, 8–27, 31–34, 47, 50–59, 61–90, and 92–103 served upon Defendant Long Beach Memorial Medical Center (LBMMC). Plaintiff argues that Defendant has responded to these requests solely with unmeritorious objections.


This motion fails for a number of reasons, first and foremost being Plaintiff’s mischaracterization of Defendant LBMMC’s discovery responses. Plaintiff provides what purports to be a separate statement under Rule 3.1345 of the Rules of Court, but which does not provide the “full request and the full response” for each of the 80 requests at issue. (CRC Rule 3.1345, subd. (c).) Plaintiff instead offers a list of the requests, then states that Defendant responded only with an identical block of objections. (Motion at p. 18.) This would perhaps be sufficient if Defendant had actually responded to each request with a boilerplate set of objections, but review of Defendant’s actual responses at issue shows that they in almost every case differed from Plaintiff’s model response in important ways. Defendant’s responses included objections to the phrasing of the particular requests (See, e.g., Request No. 1, 10), objections to the request’s reliance on interrogatories which were also subject to objections (See Request No. 47), statements of inability to comply (See Request No. 102 and 103), or, in many cases, statements of partial compliance. (See Requests No. 14, 16–19, 25, 31, 32, 34, 50, 51, 57, 62, 63, 66, 77, 80–82, 84–90, and 92; Motion Exh. B.) Plaintiff’s motion thus mischaracterizes the responses that he received, offers no consistent rationale for the deficiency of any particular response, and states no good cause to support an order that any further response be provided.


In this respect, Plaintiff’s motion mimics the meet-and-confer efforts that preceded it. While Plaintiff was represented by counsel in this action, the parties appear to have conducted thoughtful exchanges of discovery, including discussions of Defendant’s objections (See Opposition Exh. K) as well as offers to narrow the scope of documents to be produced. (See Motion Exh. C at pp. 28–31.) Once Plaintiff’s counsel substituted out of the case, however, Plaintiff’s correspondence simply declared Defendant’s responses full of unspecified “deficiencies” and demanded supplemental production pursuant to an unspecified “agreement” with Plaintiff’s ex-counsel. (Motion Exh. C at p. 18.) When Defendant invited further conference on what Plaintiff sought, he provided a list of the requests he deemed deficient, with no elaboration as to why. (Motion Exh. C at pp. 5–6.) This meet-and-confer effort was insufficient, and provides a further basis for denying the present motion.


The motion to compel further is DENIED.