United States District Court, D. Nevada
PATRICIA G. BARNES., Plaintiff,
NANCY A. BERRYHILL, Acting Commissioner Social Security Administration Defendant, Defendants.
MIRANDA M. DU, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
brought this action based on her non-selection for an
attorney advisor position with the Social Security
Administration (“SSA”) in Reno, Nevada. (ECF No.
1.) The Court permitted Plaintiff to file an amended
complaint (“Second Amended Complaint” or
“SAC”)) on April 15, 2019. (ECF No. 86.) Since
then, Plaintiff has filed several motions. The Court is
compelled to address some of Plaintiff's pending motions
before considering the merits of the SAC. The Court now
addresses two pending motions filed as ECF Nos. 108 and 115.
PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTION TO MAGISTRATE'S RULING (ECF NO.
objects to Magistrate Judge William G. Cobb's order,
after related hearing, dismissing Plaintiff's
“emergency” motion for an order of protection and
to quash against Defendant Nancy A. Berryhill (or SSA)
(“Defendant”) (ECF No. 92) and Plaintiff's
second motion for sanctions (ECF No. 104)
(“Objection”). (ECF Nos 109, 108.) Defendant has
responded. (ECF No. 114) The Court will overrule
reviewing a magistrate judge's non-dispositive pretrial
order, the magistrate's factual determinations are
reviewed for clear error. See 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)(A); see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(a).
“A finding is clearly erroneous when although there is
evidence to support it, the reviewing body on the entire
evidence is left with the definite and firm conviction that a
mistake has been committed.” United States v.
Ressam, 593 F.3d 1095, 1118 (9th Cir. 2010) (quotation
omitted). A magistrate judge's pretrial order issued
under § 636(b)(1)(A) is not subject to de novo review,
and the reviewing court “may not simply substitute its
judgment for that of the deciding court.” Grimes v.
City & County of San Francisco, 951 F.2d 236, 241
(9th Cir. 1991).
motion for emergency protection and to quash as well as her
motion for sanctions are interrelated. (See ECF Nos.
92, 104.) These motions focus on Plaintiff's contention
that Defendant is using discovery to, inter alia,
intimidate, harass, annoy, oppress, and embarrass Plaintiff
in violation of Fed.R.Civ.P. 26 (c)(1)(D). (Id.) In
her motion for sanctions, Plaintiff additionally claims that
the defense is invading her constitutionally-protected right
to privacy. (See, e.g., ECF No. 104 at 2, 5.)
Plaintiff specifically sought an order of protection related
to subpoenas Defendant issued to Plaintiff's prior and
current employers. (ECF No. 92.)
Cobb denied Plaintiff's motions for protective order and
to quash on procedural and substantive grounds (ECF No. 109
at 2-7.) Among various procedural reasons, Judge Cobb
concluded that Plaintiff failed to “meet and
confer” regarding discovery as defined in LR IA 1-3(f)
(id. at 2). See LR 26-7(c) (providing that a
discovery motion “will not be considered” absent
good faith effort to meet and confer as defined in LR IA
1-3(f)). Judge Cobb also concluded that Plaintiff failed to
satisfy the requirements imposed by Local Rule 7-4 for
seeking emergency relief (ECF No. 109 at 3). See LR
26-7(d) (“Written requests for judicial assistance to
resolve an emergency discovery dispute must satisfy LR
Cobb further denied Plaintiff's motion for sanctions
because he determined it to be accordingly baseless and not
properly filed-having not been filed separately from
Plaintiff's response to Defendant's motion in
opposition (ECF Nos. 102, 104). (Id. at 7.) In her
Objection, Plaintiff merely contends that Judge Cobb abused
his discretion in his rulings. (ECF No. 108 at 3.) Therefore,
the Court need not look further to overrule Plaintiff's
Objection-Plaintiff is required to show that Judge Cobb's
rulings were clearly erroneous and she fails to even argue in
that regard. Nor does the Court find that Judge Cobb's
rulings were clearly erroneous. In terms of the procedural
issues, Plaintiff did not comply with the Court's
referenced local rules. Pro se litigants like Plaintiff must
still comply with all procedural rules. See, e.g.,
Carter v. C.I.R., 784 F.2d 1006, 1008 (9th Cir.
1986) (explaining that a pro se litigant “is expected
to abide by the rules of the court in which he
PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO STAY (ECF NO. 115)
next requests that the Court stay Defendant's subpoenas
of her current and former employers until the Court rules on
her Objection. (ECF No. 115.) In light of the Court's
ruling above, Plaintiff's motion to stay is denied as
Court notes that the parties made several arguments and cited
to several cases not discussed above. The Court has reviewed
these arguments and cases and determines that they do not
warrant discussion as they do not affect the outcome of the
issues before the Court.
therefore ordered that Plaintiff's objection to Judge
Cobbs rulings on her motions for protection and to quash
Defendant's subpoenas and Plaintiff's motion for
sanctions (ECF No. 108) is denied.
further ordered that Plaintiffs motion to stay (ECF No. 115)
is denied as moot in light of the Court's ...