United States District Court, D. Minnesota
IN RE CENTURYLINK SALES PRACTICES AND SECURITIES LITIGATION This Document Relates to Civil File Nos. 17-2832, 17-4613, 17-4614, 17-4615, 17-4616, 17-4617, 17-4618, 17-4619, 17-4622, 17-4943, 17-4944, 17-4945, 17-4947, 17-5001, 17-5046
Carolyn G. Anderson, Brian C. Gudmundson, Bryce D. Riddle,
and Hart L. Robinovitch, Zimmerman Reed LLP, Plaintiffs'
Interim Co- Lead and Liaison Counsel; Mark M. O'Mara,
Alyssa J. Flood, Channa Lloyd, and Caitlin Frenkel,
O'Mara Law Group, and Mark J. Geragos, Benjamin J.
Meiselas, and Lori G. Feldman, Geragos & Geragos, APC,
Plaintiffs' Interim Co-Lead Counsel; Daniel C. Hedlund
and Michelle J. Looby, Gustafson Gluek PLLC, Richard M.
Hagstrom, Anne T. Regan, Nicholas S. Kuhlmann, and Jason
Raether, Hellmuth & Johnson, PLLC, Roxanne Barton Conlin,
Roxanne Conlin & Associates, PC, and Francois M.
Blaudeau, W. Lewis Garrison, Jr., Christopher B. Hood, and
James F. McDonough, III, Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC,
Plaintiffs' Executive Committee; and T. Ryan Langley,
Hodge & Langley Law Firm, P.C., Michael Fuller, Olsen
Daines PC, Brandon C. Fernald, Fernald Law Group LLP, Bonner
C. Walsh, Walsh PLLC, Alfred M. Sanchez, and Orin Kurtz,
Gardy & Notis, LLP, Additional Counsel for Plaintiffs and
the Proposed Class.
Douglas P. Lobel, David A. Vogel, Martin S. Schenker, and
Jeffrey M. Gutkin, Cooley LLP, and William A. McNab and David
M. Aafedt, Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A., Counsel for
Defendant CenturyLink, Inc.
MEMORANDUM OF LAW & ORDER
Michael J. Davis United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on Defendant's Motion to
Temporarily Stay Discovery Pending Resolution of Forthcoming
Motion to Compel Arbitration and Enforce Class-Action
Waivers. (MDL [Docket No. 87].) The Court heard oral argument
on May 2, 2018. For good cause shown, the Court grants the
April 28, 2018, Defendant CenturyLink, Inc.
(“CenturyLink”) filed Defendant and Proposed
Intervenors' Motion to Compel Arbitration and Enforce
Class-Action Waivers (MDL [Docket No. 122]), in which it
claims that 37 of the 38 named Plaintiffs agreed to
arbitration and class-action waiver clauses in their service
contracts such that their claims against CenturyLink in this
case are subject to mandatory individual arbitration. It
further claims that the thirty-eighth Plaintiff, Michael
Maguire, agreed solely to a class-action waiver.
have taken the position that class-wide discovery on the
merits should begin immediately. According to Defendant, such
discovery will implicate more than 5.5 million customers.
(Beard Decl. ¶ 4.) Defendant asks that the Court stay
discovery until it has ruled on the Motion to Compel
Rule of Civil Procedure 26(c) provides that “a court
may stay discovery for good cause shown. However, it, of
course, is black letter law that the mere filing of a motion
to dismiss the complaint does not constitute ‘good
cause' for the issuance of a discovery stay.”
TE Connectivity Networks, Inc. v. All Sys. Broadband,
Inc., No. CIV. 13-1356 (ADM/FLN), 2013 WL 4487505, at *2
(D. Minn. Aug. 20, 2013) (citations omitted). “Courts
use a balancing test to determine whether good cause exists,
weighing the moving party's potential burden against the
opposing party's interest in the discovery at
issue.” Wells Fargo Ins. Servs. USA, Inc. v. Kyle
King & Sherman Ins. Agency, Inc., No. 15-CV-4378
(PJS/HB), 2016 WL 6892108, at *3 (D. Minn. July 29, 2016).
Regarding whether good cause exists to stay litigation
pending proceedings in another forum, courts in this district
consider, among other things, whether a stay would unduly
prejudice or give a clear tactical advantage to one party,
whether a stay will simplify the issues in question and the
trial of the case, and whether discovery is complete and a
trial date has been set.
Id. “It may often make sense for discovery to
continue while a federal court considers whether a case that
will probably be litigated no matter what will proceed before
it or in some other court, but courts have regularly stayed
discovery while the court considers whether a case must
instead proceed in arbitration.” Id. at *4
(gathering cases). When a pending motion to dismiss would
dispose of all or substantially all of the case, it
“appears to have substantial grounds, ” and is
“not unfounded in the law, ” courts have stayed
discovery during the pendency of the motion.
Anti-Monopoly, Inc. v. Hasbro, Inc., No. 94CIV. 2120
(LMM)(AJP), 1996 WL 101277, at *4 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 7, 1996).