Plaintiffs filed a class action complaint against defendant Tournament One Corp. in Nevada state court. Tournament One removed the case to federal court, and immediately filed a Motion to Compel Arbitration and a Motion to Dismiss, or, in the alternative, to stay the case pending the arbitration motion.
In the resulting opinion, Kidneigh v. Tournament One Corp., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62217 (D. Nev. May 1, 2013), The trial court stressed that the Rules of Civil Procedure do not allow for automatic stays of discovery just because a dispositive motion is pending. But, observing that "discovery is expensive," it granted the motion to stay. As it reasoned:
With Rule 1 as its prime directive, this court must decide whether it is more just to speed the parties along in discovery while a dispositive motion is pending or to delay discovery to accomplish the inexpensive determination of the case.
The Court finds that the Defendant has made the strong showing necessary to support the requested stay. The issues before the Court in the pending dispositive motion do not require further discovery and are potentially dispositive of the entire case.
Rule 1, of course, requires courts to interpret the Rules of Civil Procedure "to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action and proceeding."
There are two takeaways from this case: first, when moving to stay, make sure the underlying dispositive motion is as close to a slam dunk as possible. Second, in class actions, which involve huge expenditures of time and effort in discovery, never underestimate the power of invoking Rule 1.