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Vaccaro v. APS Healthcare Bethesda Inc.

Court of Chancery of Delaware

February 23, 2015

Vaccaro
v.
APS Healthcare Bethesda. Inc.,

Date Submitted: January 26, 2015

Michael A. Weidinger, Esquire Seton C. Mangine, Esquire Pinckney, Weidinger, Urban & Joyce LLC

Blake Rohrbacher, Esquire Richards Layton & Finger, P.A.

Dear Counsel:

I have before me Mr. Weidinger's letter of January 26, 2015, which helpfully and lucidly states both parties' positions as to whether discovery of this action should be stayed pending a ruling by the United States District Court for the District of Delaware on Vaccaro's Motion to Dismiss Universal's Securities Fraud Action. A motion to stay discovery is addressed in the sound discretion of the trial court.[1] In exercising this discretion, I must balance the interest of the moving party in avoiding needless and wasteful litigation costs against the need of the party in opposition to timely prepare the matter for resolution by the Court.[2] In light of these factors, the Court will often grant motions for a stay in cases where a case dispositive motion will, if successful, inevitably end the litigation; in such a case, discovery will be wasteful if the dispositive motion is granted.[3]

I find the balancing test easier in this situation, because it appears likely that the dispute in this matter will go forward after the resolution of Vaccaro's Motion to Dismiss currently before the District Court. That determination will have an impact on my analysis of whether the issues here should remain in this Court or be pursued in the District Court; it is unlikely, however, to obviate the need for discovery in all forums. While there may be some inefficiencies in proceeding with discovery in one forum of materials ultimately to be used in another, I find that the Defendants, as the party requesting the stay, have failed to meet their burden[4] to show that such considerations outweigh the need for a reasonably swift preparation for trial, including preserving recollections of events which, like all human memories, tend to be ephemeral.

For the foregoing reasons, the Defendants' request to stay discovery pending the outcome of the Motion to Dismiss in the District Court is denied. To the extent the foregoing requires an Order to take effect, IT IS SO ORDERED.

Sincerely,

SAM GLASSCOCK III


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