United States District Court, D. Connecticut
TRAVELERS CASUALTY AND SURETY COMPANY, formerly known as AETNA CASUALTY AND SURETY COMPANY, Plaintiff,
CENTURY INDEMNITY CO., successor to INSURANCE COMPANY OF NORTH AMERICA, Defendant.
RULING RE: MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION OF ORDER ON
MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE MOTION TO COMPEL PRODUCTION (Doc.
C. Hall United States District Judge
plaintiff, Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, formerly
known as Aetna Casualty and Surety Company
("Travelers"), filed this action for breach of two
reinsurance contracts and for declaratory judgment, against
the defendant, Century Indemnity Company, successor to
Insurance Company of North America ("Century").
See Amended Compl. (Doc. No. 24) ¶ 1. Before
the court is Century's Motion for Reconsideration (Doc.
No. 66) concerning a discovery dispute.
seeks reimbursement for asbestos-related settlement funds
that Travelers paid on behalf of a policyholder. See
Amended Compl. ¶ 11. Travelers' declaratory judgment
claims ask the court to declare, inter alia, that
(1) the parties' reinsurance agreements do not obligate
Travelers to provide Century with privileged documents, see
Id. ¶ 59, and (2) Century's obligation to
pay is not preconditioned on access to Travelers'
records, see Id. ¶ 69.
October 21, 2016, Century filed a Motion for Leave to File a
Motion to Compel Production (Doc. No. 48). Century sought
leave to file a motion out of time to compel Travelers to
respond to a set of requests for production, by producing,
inter alia, documentation concerning Travelers'
settlement of the underlying claims. See Mem. in
Supp. of Mot. to File (Doc. No. 49) at 1, 6. Century stated
that Travelers had "refused to produce the
non-privileged portion of its outside coverage counsel files,
citing baseless relevancy and burdensomeness grounds, and had
also improperly asserted privilege in connection with
[certain] business, not legal, communications."
Id., at 1-2. Century also stated that Travelers had
"failed to live up to its contractual obligation to
provide proper billings and information concerning the
underlying settlement." Id., at 2. In support
of its Motion, Century argued, inter alia, that the
parties' reinsurance contracts obligated Travelers to
provide certain information. See Id. at
12-13; see also Id. at 3-4 (quoting portion
of reinsurance contracts).
court denied the Motion for Leave to File. See
Endorsement Order (Doc. No. 63). Thereafter, Century filed
this Motion for Reconsideration (Doc. No. 66).
of Connecticut Local Rule 7(c) provides an avenue for filing
Motions for Reconsideration. Parties must file and serve such
Motions within fourteen days of the ruling from which relief
is sought and provide "a memorandum setting forth
concisely the matters or controlling decisions which counsel
believes the [c]ourt overlooked in the initial decision or
order." D. Conn. Civ. R. 7(c)(1). In all other respects,
motions for reconsideration are briefed and adjudicated like
any other motion. See D. Conn. Civ. R. 7(c)(2).
standard for granting a motion for reconsideration is
'strict.'" Fallman v. Hotel Insider,
Ltd., No. 14-CV-10140 (DLC), 2016 WL 6238610, at *1
(S.D.N.Y. Oct. 25, 2016) (quoting Analytical Surveys,
Inc. v. Tonga Partners, 684 F.3d 36, 52 (2d Cir. 2012)).
"The major grounds justifying reconsideration are an
intervening change of controlling law, the availability of
new evidence, or the need to correct a clear error or prevent
manifest injustice." Virgin Atl. Airways, Ltd. v.
Nat'l Mediation Bd., 956 F.2d 1245, 1255 (2d Cir.
1992) (quotation marks omitted). "[R]econsideration will
generally be denied unless the moving party can point to
controlling decisions or data that the court
overlooked-matters, in other words, that might reasonably be
expected to alter the conclusion reached by the court."
Shraderv. CSXTransp., Inc., 70 F.3d 255, 257 (2d
Cir. 1995)); see also Sellers v. First Student,
Inc., No. 16-CV-236 (JCH), 2016 WL 7493953, at *2 (D.
Conn. Dec. 30, 2016). "[A] motion to reconsider should
not be granted where the moving party seeks solely to
relitigate an issue already decided." Shrader,
70 F.3d at 257.
Motion for Reconsideration presents no reasoning which could
persuade the court to alter its decision to deny the Motion
for Leave to File. Century still has not shown good cause for
the belated nature of its proposed motion to compel
production. Century suggests that good cause exists for this
lateness, due to the fact that Century had to review over 30,
000 pages of production. See Mem. in Supp. of Mot.
for Reconsideration (Doc. No. 66-1) at 9. However, Century
has not demonstrated why it needed to review all the
documents produced, before moving to compel production of the
documents Century now seeks. Travelers has represented to the
court that, on May 23, 2016, a month before Travelers had
completed its production of over 30, 000 documents, Travelers
had already objected to production of the outside coverage
counsel files. See Mem. in Opp. to Mot. to File
(Doc. No. 60) at 3. Century thus has not given an adequate
reason for why Century would need to review all the documents
that Travelers produced in order to determine that Travelers
had not produced the outside coverage counsel files.
Travelers has represented to the court that it substantially
completed its production on June 23, 2016. See Mem.
in Opp. to Mot. for Reconsideration (Doc. No. 75) at 4.
Almost four months passed between that date and the date when
Century filed its Motion for Leave to File a Motion to Compel
Production, on October 21, 2016. Century notes that,
"[a]s far back as July 25, 2016, Century made the Court
aware that Century anticipated the possibility of a motion to
compel the further production of documents from
Travelers." Mem. in Supp. of Mot. for Reconsideration at
9 (internal quotation marks and brackets omitted). The fact
that Century knew as far back as July 25, 2016 that Century
might decide to move to compel production weighs
against finding good cause, however. If Century had
this knowledge as far back as July 25, 2016, Century had an
opportunity to prepare and file a motion to compel earlier.
also reiterates that it obtained new counsel on August 25,
2016. See Reply (Doc. No. 76) at 7-8. However,
almost two months passed between the date when new counsel
appeared and the date when Century filed its Motion for Leave
the court continues to believe that the documents that
Century seeks to obtain by compelling production are
effectively what the underlying dispute in this case is
about: In its Amended Complaint, Travelers asks the court to
declare, inter alia, that Century's obligation
to pay is not preconditioned on access to records.
See Amended Compl. ¶ 69 ("Travelers
Casualty is entitled to a declaratory judgment pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2201 that Facultative Certificates' access
to records provision does not create a pre-condition to
Century's obligation to make payment of its proportion of
loss and expenses promptly following receipt of proof of
loss."). Travelers' refusal to produce documents on
"relevancy" grounds, ...