Employer Warned About ‘Self Interested’ Failure To Produce Computer Data

entrance to supermarketIn an employment discrimination case, the critical evidence  generally is in the possession of the employer, especially computer-based electronically stored information (ESI).

Clearly, the employer has little incentive to produce such evidence to a defendant who is seeking legal redress.

This issue recently arose in an age discrimination case in Florida that is being prosecuted by the U.S. Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against MI 5100 Corp., doing business as Jumbo Supermarket, Inc.

In a ruling this month, U.S. Magistrate Judge William Matthewman of the Southern District of Florida said he was “greatly” concerned and “troubled” that Jumbo’s legal counsel appears to have permitted two “self-interested” non-attorneys at Jumbo to collect and produce ESI sought by the EEOC.

“When combined with [EEOC’s] assertion that only 22 pages of documents have been produced by [Jumbo] in this complicated age discrimination case, the Court seriously questions the efficacy of  [Jumbo’s] search, collection and document production,” he writes.

He gave Jumbo one more chance to comply with the EEOC’s discovery requests or face the prospect of a court order granting the EEOC direct access to Jumbo’s computer system so it can obtain the data itself . Continue reading “Employer Warned About ‘Self Interested’ Failure To Produce Computer Data”